Raising It Up: Couple Enjoys Benefits of Gardening On Their Level

Published 12:00 am Thursday, April 4, 2013

By Mike Barnhardt
Enterprise Record

There’s no reason not to have a garden.
Fresh vegetables are better than those bought at the store, at just a fraction of the cost. Tending a garden gets you outside, and moving.
Short on space? Try a raised bed garden. Is it getting more difficult for you to bend over? Try a raised bed garden.
Gene and Lena Allen did just that, and the Davie couple is quick to tout the ease and benefit of gardening with raised beds.
“I cannot get out there and dig like I used to, and he can’t either,” she said. “So the raised beds are ideal.”
He has talked to local farm stores to stock the items needed to build a raised bed. Most places that sell lumber will cut what you need to the lengths you need. Putting it together is a breeze, Gene said.
“I didn’t want to have to bend over to pick green beans,” he said. “You can plant earlier than anybody else. With a cover, you can keep the frost off your plants. You can stick one anywhere, and they don’t look bad.”
The Allens grow vegetables in every season, from lettuce, broccoli, cauliflower, chard and spinach in the cool weather – to beans, eggplant, cucumbers, sweet potatoes and tomatoes during the warm months.
More about those tomatoes, just about everybody’s garden favorite. Gene has a special recipe for tomatoes when planting. Dig the hole and add a bit of fertilizer, Epsom salt, lime and sugar.
“An old lady told my wife (this recipe) and said it would pull that sugar right up in the plant,” he said. “That’ll bring the bees to pollinate ‘em.” He leaves the container the plants come in on the sides …