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i am a family physician who was diagnosed with
early mild cognitive impairment(mci) amnestic type on december 21, 2010
this is a precursor to alzheimers disease
because of this diagnosis i have opted to stop practicing medicine
this blog will be about my journey with this disease
please feel free to follow me along this path
i will continue blogging on organic gardening, green living,
solar power, rainwater collection, and healthy living
i will blog on these plus other things noted to be interesting

Monday, August 24, 2015

three sisters

this fall the school that i am helping some with their garden
want to plant the three sisters
so that the squash beans and corn
will be ready close to thanksgiving
using this garden as an educational event for the elementary kids
Native American Three Sisters Garden seed packet
here is a link from the organic seed company renees garden
on how to plant the three sisters

they will probably choose runner beans corn and squash
now i did this once and used renees garden packet
which used small pumpkins

we got lots of pumpkins and beans and some corn
they will probably use zucchini and or yellow squash
tatume squash would be a good choice since it grows on vines
but the seeds have to be ordered from seed companies

so my advise would be go with what you can get locally
they are up against a time limit ie they have about a week
to get this planted so the stuff grows in time for thanksgiving

here is the school garden after a summer of rest in the sun
and with no water
we have had several weeks without no rain

remember this is all about gardening in central texas
so those of you who live in california utah new york
ohio florida arizona new mexico etc
the timing is all different
the principles are the same no matter where you live

so these beds had peppers and tomatoes in them
which sucked a lot of nutrition from the soil
it needs to be replaced

so we added 4 inches + of compost
since the original soil from my inspection was probably
sandy loam which is basically dead dirt plus sand plus
some compost
not the best soil but last spring a lot of compost was added
combined with this falls application of compost
will gradually over time improve the soils structure

gardeners there is an old saying
take a $5 plant and put it in a $50 hole
its the soil where the money needs to be spent
its the lifeblood of gardening
that and compost
after the large quantity of compost is added
the recommended amount of an organic granular fertilizer was added
we used lady bug 8-2-4 but around this area medina growin green
and gardenvilles organic fertilizer are also a good choice
Image result for ladybug 8-2-4 fertilizer
remember for this garden little kiddos are going to be digging
in this soil
eating the produce
so we want it all organically grown and safe
Image result for ladybug 8-2-4 fertilizer
then i added cottonseed meal another organic fertilizer that
the plant can access quicker
Image result for medina liquid molasses
then we added a soaking of molasses
which provides an energy source for the bacteria and fungi
which are necessary to provide the food to the plants
Image result for medina liquid humates
then we added liquid humates
which help breakdown the stuff in the soil so the bacteria
fungi and plants can use it

i add these humates at least once an year
the molasses compost organic fertilizer with each planting we do
Image result for ladybug greensand
i usually add greensand a source of iron and other minerals
but the compost already had it mixed in

in my garden i dont work this into the soil
since my soil is so rich
i just plant right into all his stuff ie the $50 hole
since their beginning soil is not as rich
i recommend they mix this real good with the top 2-3 inches
of the soil
doing this each time new crops are planted will gradually
put their soil to where it will be worth $50

now that the soil is enriched
it needs to be watered every couple of days down to about
this soil was dried big time from our hot dry summer
although when i dug down deep into the soil there was
moisture there
this moisture will restart the life in the soil so that
by planting time next week
the new soils activity will be going strong

then next week
i would plant the three sisters similar to the diagrams
in the renees garden article above
it needs some modifying since the bed is only 3ft wide

once planted the seeds need to be watered at least once a day
maybe sometimes twice a day
so that they dont get dried out
dry them out and they wont sprout

in my garden i covered the bed with netting to shade the hot sun
eg the black lace netting from joanns fabric works well
is cheap

if the weather cools off this netting isnt necessary

now do a weather dance
so that we have a warm fall
if it rains dont water the garden
since the poor soil down deep in the bed turns into
wet gooey clay if it gets too much water
dont worry eventually the soil all the way down to the
bottom will be good stuff

then you have to be ready for those early freezes
which can wipe out all your efforts
luckily the garden is protected from the north
faces the warm south
wish my country n garden was situated like yours

you might consider putting up hoops like this with pvc
covering the gardens with thick row cover easily found
at many nurseries
or use sheets or blankets
ive done all three

if we have a late freeze this fall then none of this will
be necessary

then after all this is harvested
do what we did this week to get the soil refurbished
plant your fall winter garden
that will be the best garden of the year

good luck with your three sisters garden
those native americans who planted this
that was their food source
lose it and they didnt have a grocery store to go to
getting it all right was important

bon appetite

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