Right m now mebbie an hour a week, during planting and setip maybe 60 hours over a months period of time. Putting the garden to bed will take about 10 hours more. I don't own any labor savding devices It's all using my back to get iot done.
This is my down time right now, all I've got going are sweet potatoes and a few die hard cayenne and jalapeno peppers. Oh, and the herbs... and the maintenance on the strawberry plants... and the heat treating the fallow areas for fall. So now while the garden is mainly dead, about 30 minutes a day.
During prepping and growing times, the garden takes about 2 hours a day. Planting takes as many hours as I can come up with and the outcome of my garden hinges on as much time as possible during the planting time.
I spend a lot of time in the garden! Its my stress relief from the office. Just doing nothing but wondering around between rows. I check different vegetables as I sip my morning coffee.
I have pole beans making seed, banana peppers that need picked, huge green tomatoes, sweet corn almost ready to pick, disobedient cucumbers that are climbing all over the tomatoes/cabbage/sweet potatoes, garlic drying, and this morning I started cabbage & broccoli seeds in starter trays. I have one Poblano pepper plant that I check everyday, its my seed for next year. Oh, and those nasty weeds that play hide & seek with me? I need a bench in my garden, or maybe a swing?
At the start of the season, I was out there everyday. Picking off bugs,weeding etc. Then I got overrun with bugs and things started dying ... and I kind of gave up a little bit. Didn't go out for a week. Oh god. It is horrible out there now. I'm not proud of myself.. and I could have done better...I'm still trying to recover. But the squash bugs are just brutal and I'm trying to wait for a few more tomatoes ripen and I'm just going to ripe it all of out.
Got beat by those damn squash bugs for the 2nd year!
This time of year, as little as possible. Kinda hard to stand out there in 100 degree, 90% humidity and feel good about much of anything. Son got a burst of energy and hacked out all the grass growing in it yesterday and threw it on the mulch pile. Good for him :thumb:
Big one's disked and waiting for a rain, little one's gonna get tilled and watered down in a few weeks, then the fall garden cycle starts, and I absolutely DREAD the few weeks between planting stuff and the first norther! Miserable!
I'm up to about 5000sf of garden space in the rabbit fence. I guess about 3 hrs a week on average. This time of year it's mainly weeding and killing bugs. Squash beetles take time to find and kill and crab grass to pull.
As mentioned up thread, a cup of joe and I take a little hike around to see what got nibbled on. Let the lawn borders dry out and water and pull as necessary. Dig a little and remove rocks. Crush some bugs and cut some infected leaves on the vines and stems. Decide what to pick and what to let to go to seed.
Depends on the time of year...Most hours in the Spring when planting and weed seeds sprouting like crazy...this time of year just enough to harvest...I'm lucky that I usually don't have to water too much here...More hours again soon when I put in my Fall stuff and do cleanup...but I enjoy it, so it's not a chore for me..if I could play out there all year round, I'd love it!
We live in a city apartment and container garden. It takes much more time and effort to haul the supplies in from the storage unit each spring and back again each fall than it does to actually take care of the garden. We build a 3 step Terrance arrangement from old shelving units and cinder blocks to maximize the space. I start the plants in the kitchen and then have a period of a couple of weeks where we take flats of 4 & 6" pots out in the morning and back inside for the still chilly nights. Once everything is in its permanent container and its all staged in the area we have - about 6x14ft - I spend 30-45 minutes at dawn and dusk, taking care of everything.
Although there are advantages to this type of garden: less weeds, pests and bugs, I'm looking forward to having real dirt and space to grow corn and potatoes again soon.
I spend just 15 minutes a day-if that- in my garden. Of course because I am handicapped I cheat a bit.
Instead of hand picking bugs, I spray with a BT spray or something like it. It gets cabbage worms, those grey squash bugs, blister beetles, and I do not know what else. It does a good job, and it is organic. This year I used "Captain Jack Dead Bug" spray. The bugs had shredded the Fava beans before I noticed them and they had moved on to the potatos, but I was able to rescue the potatos and they are putting out new growth.
Basically it is a spray of dormant disease spores, that affects insects but ONLY insects! As the bug eats the leaves it infects the bug with the illness. On the down side I have to buy a new bottle every year s even dormant spores only live for so long.
I have been trying for years to grow low-labor potatos, with indifferent success. This year, after we get the garage and shed cleaned out, I want to buy a lawn sweeper to pull behind my riding mower and gather the clippings. It is too late to heavily mulch the potatos this year and DS has done a poor job of it, but next year I can sweep up the lawn clippings and dump them next to the potatos. That way *I* can mulch the potatos and I intend to do a GOOD job of it! I have tried the collecting baskets that hang behind the mower but they are more work than you would think: I have to get up and walk around the back of the mower every few minutes to dump them, and my ankles are not so good. With a sweeper I can stay on the mower and pull a cord to dump. I also intend to plant the potatos in a single row, so I do not have to thread my way between those floppy potato plants with an armful of mulch.
Weeds. Yes. I have heard that one person can keep the weeds off of a large garden if they keep a dust mulch up. That is to say after every rain or every watering they go out with a hoe and stir the top inch or so of the soil with a hoe. That means the top of the soil stays too dry and loose to support the germination of the weed seeds. The gardener walks backwards so that his or her footprints to not compact the soil and give the weed seeds a chance.
I have hear this but I have never tried it, due to having ankles that are not strong enough. Instead I bought a roll of woven greenhouse flooring and I got my son to help me roll it out and I spiked down the edges to keep the wind from blowing it away. Then I punched holes every 3 feet and every hole has a tomato plant, or a pinch of corn seeds, or a cabbage, or whatever. I still get a few weeds because the wind blows leaves on top to rot and to give the weeds a foot hold, but not too many and I can mostly handle those.
So, I spend 15 minutes a day in my garden at the most, and that is usually for planting, harvesting, and moving my sprinkler. I would GUESS that the garden is roughly 30' by 30'.
The woven greenhouse flooring was not cheap, and my vegetable harvest will not pay for it at any time soon, but I love picking my own vegetables, and as a prep item it is not bad! It cost about as much as my tiller did. I bought it at www.Morgancountyseeds.com,
but any greenhouse place ought to have it! Mine is about 3 years old and still going strong.