A few things we did in the garden: we kept the horses in there with a lot of hay for part of the day during the winter thereby adding manure and hay to the garden soil; Mark and I bickered over what to do with the rows between the beds, I wanted to plant something, he wanted to put down plastic. The final decision was his and he planted clover. It was ingenious–it’s low growing, pretty and fixes nitrogen.
We are composting the horse manure and our kitchen leavings, it’s not a perfect system and sometimes things that shouldn’t go into the compost get in there anyway. Horse poo and vegetable matter to bad stuff ratio is heavily in favor of the poo and veggie matter.
We mulched with thick layers of newsprint topped with hay, straw and some organic mushroom compost from the local nursery. Something brought in squash bugs but Mark seems to have conquered those by squishing, stripping some leaves and drowning the big ones in soapy water. Traditionally this has been my job. I was glad to hand it off. Squishing squash bug eggs gets tedious.
All-in-all our garden is producing like gangbusters this year. Most days we gather chard, tomatoes, peppers, squash and a few other tidbits. Then we eat.