Gardener’s Wake-up Call from the Wild

Growing DomeFrom Dee Armstrong in Fort Garland, CO

“I’ve been working hard on the cosmetics inside and outside the Growing Dome while my fall crop ripens. I now have seven cantaloupe blossoms, ten beans that are almost ready to pick, eighteen bean plants that have already reached the top of the vent, and nearly eighty tomatoes. We’ve only picked three tomatoes, but there are quite a few blush-colored ones. We might have to heat the Growing Dome a bit until the tomatoes ripen, but next year they will ripen earlier. The Swiss chard, beets and peas are all doing very well. It’s already in the upper 40s at night now, but the dome heats up to mid-eighties during the day. It’s usually about 60 degrees in the early morning. This morning was very special in the dome. I took my yogurt and coffee to the dome to just sit. I was rather startled when the elk started bugling right near me, probably at our stream. It was the loudest bugle I have heard since we moved here. What a fantastic way to eat breakfast. It’s the wake-up call of the wild!

The ridge at sunrise—I know that I must add some more trees! And a bird or two.
Armstrong-18-outside_webOur rock edge around the outside of the Growing Dome—all rocks are from our woods. Eventually, we plan to completely cover the gravel next to the Growing Dome (over the blue board) with indigenous rocks. With the rock edge, it appears that the dome has risen from the ground, like a natural part of the woods, IMHO!

When we get settled with our plantings next spring, we will concentrate on building an island—most likely a low-level strawberry tower. Boo, our cat, loves the bits of catnip that I bring into the house each morning. The catnip is doing very well in the Growing Dome—a small patch just for Boo! She now nags me to go to the Growing Dome first thing each morning to bring back her special treat! She leaves absolutely not a tiny tidbit of catnip!”

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