Well, the two new lakeside beds are on temporary hold while we redo the landscaping nearby...which means that what was going to be my early pea patch is now not going to be available in time. So the pea patch will go into Backyard 5 and I'm thinking of doing a 3 Sisters (beans, corn and squash) planting in Lakeside 1. I read the posts on the Modern Victory Garden Blog about their 3 Sisters planting and I'd like to give it a try....
I've spent a lot of time online these past few days...I guess you could call it studying. I'm hoping that doing more research and planning will result in a good harvest this year. Last summer's harvest was pretty much of a bust except for the always cooperative potatoes. Knee surgery at the end of June (and not being able to do more than hobble for the 2 or three months before that) kept my gardening activities to a minimum and then the weather wasn't cooperative either.
As part of my "studies" I've been visiting the blogs of many other gardeners...many of them with a lot of gardening experience that they generously share in their blog posts. I was really impressed with the planting spreadsheet that was posted on Daphne's Dandelions. I have the software for a spreadsheet, but am pretty much clueless as to how to set one up. Google to the rescue! There are so many people out there willing to share what they have made...I love the Internet.
My first find was an easy to use seed starting calculator on the Johnny's Selected Seeds web site. It was easy to use; I could put in the frost date for my area and it gave me the dates to start the seed and transplant out for many varieties of vegetables and flowers. But I wanted something that I could download and modify, so I kept looking.
My next find was The Lazy Gardener's Seed Starting Chart developed by Maggie Wang the "You Grow Girl" web site. It can be downloaded for free and modified by the user, but didn't have quite all the features I wanted...so I kept going through the Google list...and then I struck pay dirt!
I found a spreadsheet that Danny Clark shared on the AeroGardenGrowers Forum. I can set it up by order of date of planting, rather than alphabetically, it has columns for the days to maturity and yield date, which is great information for successive plantings and, best of all...it's set up for Square Foot Gardening...it even has a separate page for laying out a garden!
Here is my filled in spreadsheet...(click on it and use the zoom feature to see it closer to full size)...
And part of my garden layout plan...
I now have most of my planning done and just need get my seeds started on time and get my raised beds cultivated and ready for planting...Kudos to Danny for sharing this great spreadsheet with his fellow gardeners!!