Biointensive gardening

Last summer, after our plants finally gave in to the Austin heat, I was perusing the garden blogs (probably homegrownevolution.com) looking for inspirations to improve our garden. I happened upon a post about a book called How to Grow More Vegetables: And Fruits, Nuts, Berries, Grains and Other Crops Than You Ever Thought Possible on Less Land Than You Can Imagine by John Jeavons, and decided that the title alone was enough for me to bite. So, I went to the library and checked it out, and sure enough, I was quite intrigued. How to Grow More Vegetables is the primer on biointensive gardening, a method of gardening that focuses on maximizing your food production and improving your soil. The book claimed that I could grow tons of vegetables (and fruits, nuts, berries…) using only 100 sq. ft. of land, and to top it off, it wouldn’t be that hard or take that much time. Actually, I guess the most important thing about biointensive gardening is that the long-term goal is to create a sustainable garden, one that doesn’t require any external ingredients like soil, fertilizer, or even seeds. Quite lofty, but it made me want to give it a go.

Turns out that Andria and I were fairly busy last fall, so I had to set the biointensive gardening ideas aside for a few months. But now we’re ready. We’ve got some seeds planted, a crappy mini-greenhouse built, and a new pile of brown and green material starting to compost. Here’s to hoping that we can keep this blog useful, current, and interesting, and that we can keep our cats out of the seed flats!

Iz in ur flats squishin ur seedz

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5 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Kathy on February 1, 2010 at 10:39 am

    Ha. Ha. Good job, Butterball. Rosie likes to sit on my see flats, too. I figure it makes the seedlings stronger.

    Reply

  2. Posted by Barbara Kalix on February 1, 2010 at 4:18 pm

    Hi Blair and Andrea,
    I am happy to be signed up to receive your blog! All this gardening stuff sounds quite interesting! When I first moved to FL from Indiana, I tried gardening by the only methods I knew after planting an annual garden for years up there. I had terrible luck! The bugs, rabbits, different soil, and of course the heat, just took all the fun out of it. I gave up but my interest in growing all things tropical continued. After every hard freeze we always vow to never again plant anything that is not cold hardy but as time goes by we sort of forget. I don’t think we will this time!! Right now our yard is filled with formerly beautiful, now brown and dead, plants and flowers. This last long cold snap really did tremendous damage. We have 9 large coconut palms that look like they might make it but it seems everything else is just gone.
    Anyway……I will look forward to receiving your blogs. Good luck with your garden! Love, BK

    Reply

    • Posted by blandria on February 7, 2010 at 5:38 pm

      Barbara, thanks so much for reading our blog! I wish we could grow gorgeous palm trees, but I can’t really complain too much because we mostly have a nice warm climate. Blair and I just pruned back tons of plants today in hopes we’ll see some emerge again this spring. In the gardening workshop we went to last weekend, we learned that you should wait to prune tropical plants until the weather is warm again because the leaves protect the hearts of the plants. Hope they all make it! Keep sharing your comments. 🙂

      Reply

  3. […] square foot garden. Another principle of this technique is close plant spacing, also a principle of biointensive gardening. I didn’t realize you could pretty much halve the spacing recommendations on seed packets. By […]

    Reply

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