I won't delete this post. I've deleted a couple this week.
I'm still digging. I am still working on the third 4' x 12' bed. There have been some other events and responsibilities (like putting the roof on the coop) this weekend so I haven't made as much progress on the beds as I hoped I would.
Two challenges I'm facing:
Although it's out-of-character for my former oovy-groovy, hippie-ish persona, the smell of wheatgrass makes me feel ill because of an unfortunate overdose of freshly-juiced wheatgrass that happened in Santa Cruz 25 years go. But the area where I'm digging is covered in wheatgrass because that's the cover crop I'm turning under with each shovel-ful. And every single time I break the soil/wheat with the shovel, a fresh burst of wheatgrass smell overwhelms me. This is the best cover crop we've ever used (germination, habit, coverage), but digging it up is yucking me out. I wish we had planted red clover last fall! I would probably still be out there digging at midnight.
I've been at this digging for several days now. Can you imagine how your skin would feel if you kept giving yourself clay masks for six hours, several days in a row? I have wrinkles on top of my wrinkles now. It's been clear and beautiful enough this week that the ground is actually drying out. Every time I stick my hand in the bed to pull out another rock, I get clay all over me. It's going up my shorts and chapping my legs. Between my shirt sleeves and gloves, I have a ring of chapped skin. It's not just the clay. I'm ammending the beds with some rock and mineral dusts... And then I take a couple long, hot showers (before I make lunch and after I come in for the evening) to get the dirt and ammendments off my skin and hair, so those aren't helping either. I never anticipated this problem.
And, in case you've lost count, after I finish this third bed (tomorrow! tomorrow! please!), I still have eight more to dig out.
I will do it. I refuse to give up. But man... this is really hard, friends. I am encountering many, many rocks (between 15 and 30 inches down), and I think these rocks prevented our vegetables from growing well in the past. I'm spending a *lot* of time on this -- sorting through the soil with my hand, making sure every rock is removed. Maybe I'm crazy.