After attending what was one of the most irritating classes at a garden convention, a notion kept rolling around my mind. Something seen but not focused upon in a slide show I was only half paying attention to just kept gnawing at me. In my notebook doodles of the slide were a poor representation of the idea coming to fruition. My husband was going to strangle me when he heard about this one.
Tilled soil would be a base as soaker hoses or drip irrigation hosing would be set as a guide. Over the irrigation, wide raised rows would be pulled before being covered with black fabric. Why? When we irrigate the water often evaporates before truly hitting the roots leading to poor plant development or even fruit dropping. To circumvent this, we bury the lines deep in the root's zone all while covering to retain moisture and keep weeds out.
I believe the initial results speak for themselves. The two row test area showed stunning growth, healthy root/plant development, and is 'fruiting' well. Weeds are not present and very few pests have been seen. Watering was simple- just turning the water supply on. Proudly, I strolled my husband out through the rows to see the astounding results and hear how proud he to have yielded to my insanity. That's not quite what happened. Instead, he stood there with a strange look on his face as he reported the error of my thinking: he did all that back breaking work for this trial for me to plant the one vegetable he absolutely disdains: cabbage. Uhg- he got me there.
Needless to say, the irrigated/raised/covered row was wonderful- so much so, I decided to go a bit further. This week I planted 21 blackberry canes in the very same manner (the rows are a little lower). When I showed "Mr. No Cabbage" he was fairly pleased... dreams of blackberry cobbler must be swimming around his head!
Now- what project can I rope him into next?