Friday, March 24, 2006

BeanDreams - Outside Prep

It's been a highly unusual winter, so it should come as no surprise that even though we should still have snow on the ground here in Nova Scotia, it's actually warm enough outside to get started on prepping the garden. The current garden situation is like this: we are very fortunate to have a family member come every snow storm and plow out our driveway. God love him, he has saved us more trouble than I can say. However, the garden plot happens to be located at the end of the driveway, and he was not aware of this, as there were no markings, etc. showing where it was. So now the garden has, unfortunately, quite a bit of gravel in it that has to be sifted out.

Here's some pics showing the view from the front (it looks worse than it is) and from the back (it looks better than it is). :) The log you see in the second shot is going to be used as one side of a "holder" for the raised bed (Dave's mom didn't have anything like that there before, but I think it would be a good idea to have some borders put in place).

But just in case you ever need to sift some rocks from some dirt, here's how I'm doing it (and best of all, it's free!).

First off, you get hold of metal mesh of some kind (this one we just had hanging around the house from some long-forgotten other project). Bend it up into a sort of bowl shape.

Next, shovel on some dirt with rocks in it (not too much though). Shake it somewhat vigorously, to separate the dirt from the rocks (you can sift it over a bucket, or right over the garden). Wear gloves, that metal's sharp!

And now you've got some metal mesh with rocks in it - just give 'em a toss back in the driveway and you're all set!

Of course, it might cost you a couple bucks to get some mesh if you didn't have some already. You want it to be fine enough to catch most gravel, but not too fine or else the sifting will take forever.

It might take me a little while to finish it, but the garden plot isn't actually that big, it'll be easier to see once I figure out where the borders will be, etc. Time marches on, and before you know it, it'll be planting time!