Thursday, March 29, 2012

End of March Status

Well it is the end of March and it doesn't seem like much is done, yet at the same time much has been accomplished mainly due to the warmer weather, although it has been cooler again lately but still not too bad for this time of year being in the 50s(F) during the day.  At this point we have finished the new raised beds and filled them all with dirt and compost.  I have started putting the fencing up around the beds.  I have opted for a semi-permanent fence on the ends by stapling a 4 foot section at each end.  Then the side panels will be next, I need to figure out a way to securely attach them that will allow for a quick and easy attachment and removal.

We have planted peas and spinach already in the new beds.  The greenhouse is filled with colder tolerant new seedlings and our light rack has been teaming with the warmer crops.  We will be starting a couple of flats with peppers soon for our local community garden this year.  This garden is run by volunteers and is a wonderful blessing to many in need by providing fresh produce for them.

I was able to test out the new oasis pump (mentioned previously) this week and have a mixed review.  Some things I noticed so far was that it lost its "prime" within a few seconds of not pumping, much quicker than the picture pump I used last year.  This is most likely due to air leaking where the pipes connect rather than a failure in the pump itself.  On the plus side it does seem to be able to pull up the water after several strokes without requiring to be primed.  My drop pipe is too low I think for the pumping to be comfortable.  It seemed to be a little harder to pump than the old picture pump and didn't really appear to fill a bucket faster than the old pump.  The pump handle is a little short and probably the weakest point of the new pump is that the stroke is very short and does not have a very full range of motion.  Less than 90 degrees.  I would think if they increased the stoke length and doubled the range of motion it would make the pumping be much more efficient.  The second time I used it during the day it seemed to pump a little better.  I will give it some time and see how it holds up.  I still haven't tried hooking up a hose to the discharge end yet.  I will need to get some fittings for this but I think it would be worth trying.

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