Rising to the occasion

Published 4:28 pm Friday, April 6, 2018

am raising an herb garden this spring – the optimum word being raising. The more accurate word would have to be elevated, as I have fallen victim to the elevated garden box craze. If you haven’t become aware of this relatively new gardening technique, you might want to look into it. It saves on your back when you work with the plants, and also promises to reduce damage from rabbits and other eating critters.

My good friend and work colleague, Jean Niblock, inspired me to do this, as she told me about the box she ordered online. She said it was very easy to assemble, she loved hers and she already had it planted.

So, I viewed many makes and models and ordered one 70 inches long, which I believe is just like hers.

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I could hardly wait for it to arrive so I could get started planting. I knew right where I wanted it to be—next to the wall outside the back door, where I have always had my herbs in individual pots. That was necessary because of the presence of underground electric and cable wires in that spot, so I couldn’t dig there. Plus, the pots were frequently being knocked over by the racing of my two young dogs. I needed a new solution.

Well, the best-laid plans often go awry, as the saying goes.

We carefully assembled the box in the living room and carried it out to the backyard where my husband informed me I could not put it up against the wall because of the electric box and the cable box. He carefully explained that if anyone ever needed to get in there for repairs they would have to move the plant box and it would be quite heavy once it is full of dirt and plants. He recommended setting it out away from the wall enough to allow access. Well, it just didn’t look right there and it was actually in the way, as it infringed on part of the patio.

I needed to find a new location. After much fretting and figuring, I think I have come up with the solution. I can place it around the corner from the back wall, under the kitchen window. It can get full sun all morning and will have some protection from the heat of the afternoon. Plus, it is right beside the outside water faucet, so I can set up an automatic watering system for the box. It will be perfect.

All I have to do to make it work is to seriously cut back a huge elm tree that shades that entire area, move an existing fountain, a hummingbird feeder, make a few other minor adjustments, and it will be just perfect. I can watch the herbs grow as I sit at the kitchen table.

Actually, the hardest part will be convincing my husband that we can do this. He has wondered if we should use garden soil or potting soil, and even that question is answered, as he has discovered there is now an elevated garden planting soil available, at no increased price.

So, wish me luck over the weekend as my plan goes into action. Oh, my, I just noted on my iPhone the weather report calls for rain on Saturday.