Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Shade Leads to Big Changes

If you missed the announcement, I'm leaving my lovely garden and moving to a much bigger plot of land.  This was not really something we planned to do.  It all just kind of happened.  When I questioned J about how we suddenly bought 12 acres and started having a house built, he claims it was all my doing because I was complaining about shade in my garden.

So how did a little shade lead to such big changes?

Last summer, I noticed my corn on one side of the garden were tall and the other side were really short.  I knew that there is more shade in the back of my garden, but I didn't realize it was having such an impact on growth.

One sunny afternoon I took pictures of the garden to track the sun and shade.  I discovered that the back half of my garden is shaded until almost 2 pm!  The problem is the neighbor is to the south and they have let trees grow next to the fence.  These trees are just going to get bigger and bigger, which means my garden is going to have less and less sun.  

So what's a gardener to do?  Ask the neighbors to cut down their trees?  Move the garden?  Our lot is about an acre, but it is mostly wooded.  The only sunny spot is in the middle of the front yard.  I contemplated having trees cut in the back to allow more morning sun, but that would probably be expensive (and sad to cut down trees) and I would still have shade from the neighbor's trees to the south.

So I started looking online at houses and land for sale.  I wasn't really too serious about it, but it was fun to dream.  I promise that the shade in my garden wasn't the only reason.  My current commute is 100 miles a day and I hate it.  More sun and a shorter drive was my goal.  We drove around and checked out some lots and some houses, but nothing seemed worth the cost or the hassle of moving.  Most of the lots for sale were forested without much level ground.

Then we found it. 

It was the perfect location.  My commute would only be 30 miles per day.  It was private, there was a pond, and it was 12 acres with plenty of sunny spots for a garden.

Then began the roller coaster of realtors, builders, county permits, and banks.  I did not know how difficult banks are about construction loans.  I lost count of how many times we went from excitement to disappointment back to excitement.  It took almost three months from when we made an offer on the land until we finally closed on both the land and a soon-to-be built house.

So that's how shade in my lovely garden led to a very big change!


  1. How exciting!!! Lucky you!! It may be a lot of work...but, you are one lucky gardener to be moving to such a lovely large space! Love the pond! Good luck!

  2. Good luck with the new home and all the construction that will be going on.

  3. After looking at that picture I can see why you needed to move. Sounds like the perfect place. How exciting! Hope everything moves along smoothing. Nancy

  4. Now you can stop commuting to work and become a complete homesteader and save money :-). I have been long dreaming of lands but they are extremely costly in NJ and upstate NY is too cold. So, still not sure what to do; but with 12 acres, you can have cows to get milk/cheese, chickens, honeybees and what not :-). Wow! congratulations :-).