We’ve been here just about three months. Those three months have been consumed with setting up a new home, maintaining a pool (not a selling point of the house for me, but the kids love it,) getting one child off to college, and getting the other three settled into their new home and school routines. So, now the dust has settled, and I am ready to get on with the homesteading. . . Oh. Wait. It is October in Ohio. What can I do now?
Never say never. I have a few things I am going to plant. More on those later, but the most important thing I can do at this point in the year is evaluate, plan, and prep. In the three months we’ve been here, my mind has been turning, though physically I have done very little outside (beside pool upkeep.) I have two acres to work with, sort of.
The house sits on roughly the front third of the property. It is surrounded by a row of sugar maples. Oh yes. I do plan to use those in a few months. What you can’t see in this picture is the next row of giant pines around the house. These trees are wonderful for summer shade, and I am assuming winter wind, but the shade they create is a gardening challenge. This leaves me with what I’d roughly estimate as a half acre of full sun to work with.
That space is big, flat, and open. What a welcome change from our West Virginia garden plots. I haven’t dug into the soil much yet, but hoping to find that beautiful rich Ohio soil I remember. I have had enough of gardening in clay. One corner of that sunny space has a pool to work around. That is a consideration because I don’t want to attract bees to that area and I don’t want pool chemicals in my food.
The previous owners weren’t gardeners. There are no established beds, and you may be able to tell from the pictures that the landscaping that is there is overgrown. Not all the trees in those maples and pines are healthy either. There are probably three very large ones that should be taken down. One good thing that is established is a large pile of leaves. The bottom of which is already nicely composted. Oh happy day to find such lovely soil.
Three months at The Little Homestead, and I’m itching to start digging in. There are a few things I will be digging into, but mostly I am evaluating and planning now. There are challenges here as with any homestead. I am starting with pretty much a blank slate, and what is here needs a lot of clearing out. There is a large amount of shade to work with also. What to plant? Where to plant? These are the questions of this season.