Tuesday, January 19, 2010

The Potager Garden In Hawaii


All right, I’ve really procrastinated on this potager garden all winter long and things are already turning the corner for spring gardening, at least here in Hawaii. My main problem with starting this new garden was that I had big grandiose plans with beautiful cobbled walk ways, raised stone beds, beautiful arbors and sitting areas and amazing and sustainable plantings. Needless to say I didn’t hit the dirt running, especially here in East Hawaii where there is only lava rock, with no soil this means importing dirt, nutrients, water, mulch and really starting from the ground up.



After clearing out a nice section for my tropical potager, I made some preliminary plans. Take a look an the initial plan I made from literally a piece of lined paper I save from being tossed out. Now this is where things started to fall apart. I realized that all the work I’m planning is very labor intensive and seeing that most of my funds for this potager were being allocated to the plants and trees ( and what true plant fanatic would not spend the money mostly on plants ). Sigh, I agonized about all the work involved and started slowly in the process of making piles of rock. Sorting flat rocks for pavers, squarer rocks for rock walls and odd shaped rocks for filler. It almost seemed like from the endless supply of rocks in the garden, I was just making more piles of rocks…..ugh!

Well it has been a long haul doing most of the work myself, I have been making some small progress and here’s an update on what I have finally created in a small area that will be allocated as the potager.


The foundation to a future garden shed with a stone wall perimeter is being planned. Large rocks in the background will be used for a pond and water feature.

This is the first fruit tree I planted in the potager garden. It is one of my favorite fruits trees called a surinam cherry. It tastes like a little like a cherry and pineapple combined, sweet and tangy with a very large seed and very pretty clusters of small white flowers.

Boy that was hot and exhausting just thinking about all the work involved and I’ve only just begun the adventure…stay tuned for the next chapter of the potager garden in Hawaii.


Unknown said...

Wow. A huge lot of work indeed, but well worth the effort. It'll be fun to watch the ongoing saga, I'm sure.

Anonymous said...

Dear Noel, I am overwhelmed by what I see. This is so far removed from all of my gardening experiences, and I am no beginner, but I would not know where to start. I am filled with admiration for your endeavours.

I came upon your site via Blotanical where I am a new blogger. I shall watch your progress with interest. Good luck!

Barry said...

This is indeed a most interesting undertaking.... it will be nice having a front rwo seat as it progresses!

Noelle Johnson said...

Hello Noel,

There is nothing more exciting then starting to build a new garden. For me, I always want to build it as quickly as possible. But, I find that the longer it takes, the more I appreciate each step and appreciate each new additions that much more. I am very much looking forward to seeing your garden as it grows.

Carol said...

Quite a feat Noel! I look forward to seeing the progression. Lovely rock paths... I will never complain about digging rocks again! ;>))

Liza said...

It's such hard work, but I'm proud of you for starting. It's nice to have photos to remind yourself of how far your garden has grown.

Floridagirl said...

I love the layout with all the paths and the stone centerpiece. You are so lucky to have all of those rocks!

Lavender and Vanilla Friends of the Gardens said...

One day this will be "Paradise"! If it not already is. To create a garden there is always hard yakka (Aussi slang) and sweat, there is no exception. It is the nicest and best thing to do in life, creating a garden.

Steve Asbell said...

Here's to planting gardens in different styles than your neighbors! Its an interesting take, especially with the black lava rock and tropical plants, so it will truly be special when its done. I planted a surinam cherry seed myself recently, and can't wait til it gets bigger. I hear the flavors a little resinous compared to its relatives, but who cares.

Karly Winkler said...

I thoroughly admire your efforts - that looks like an incredible amount of work! You are lucky with those beautiful rocks though. It should look striking agaist whatever you plant. I can't wait to see your progress.

Burr Oak Beginnings said...

Hi Noel,
Just dropping by to see what your doing over there on the big island and I have to say WOW! What a project you have going you make the pergola my husband and I are building look like nothing. When you get done its going to be beautiful! and by the way I could use some of your lava rocks here in florida nothing but sand so ship any extra this way you don't need..big smile...;)

debsgarden said...

Wow, what a lot of work you have done already! Don't you love earth moving equipment? I really like the rocks. Everything looks great so far - keep up the good work!

Anonymous said...

Wow, it's looking lovely already! Few things as satisfying as hard work in the garden.
Rob G

Ami said...

Noel: WOW. I am overwhelmed by just looking at the pictures! That is a LOT of hard work involved. I am sure the result will be worth it. I already can see it from this beginning result. I too envy you have so many rocks to use :) I will sure to come to follow your progress. Good luck.

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