After a long hiatus from gardening, my wife and I put out a garden last year. Our soil is so poorthat is one reason I quit gardening for so longon our hardscrabble place that we built five raised beds with concrete blocks and poured in garden soil that we bought on sale in the spring. It was a little pricey to get started, but it was quicker and easier and likely cheaper than adding all the soil amendments necessary. The raised beds also provided good drainage.We had a successful vegetable garden last year, lots of tomatoes well into the fall. I took green tomatoes into the house right before Thanksgiving.We started early this spring with a garden of peas and greens, and it was highly successful, too, although I don't think I want to do all that again. The peas, well, yes, maybe again, but you take up a lot of room for kale, turnip greens, chard and the like, and when you cook that stuff down, there's not a whole lot left. I'd have to plant a five-acre plot to cook up enough greens to keep me happy. I think I'll just keep buying greens; I'm partial to that Old Glory brand.Now we've got the real stuff of gardens growing: tomatoes, cucumbers, beans, squash, pumpkins, cantaloupe and watermelon. The potatoes and sweet potatoes we planted earlier are also growing. So far, everything looks great. I wish it would rain, for I'm tired of watering every day. Soaker hoses and drip irrigation systems make the most efficient use of water during dry times, according to the Missouri Botanical Garden, but I don't do that. I stand out there for an hour or so with a nozzle and hose.The Missouri Botanical Garden also recommends that by now I have should have started seedlings of broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower to provide transplants for our fall garden.Here's what the Missouri Botanical Garden recommends for July:n Weeks 1-4: Blossom-end rot of tomato and peppers occurs when soil moisture is uneven. Water when soils begin to dry; maintain a 2-3 inch layer of mulch.* Weeks 1-4: Cover grape clusters loosely with paper sacks to provide some protection from marauding birds.* Week 1: To minimize insect damage to squash and cucumber plants, try covering them with lightweight floating row covers. Remove covers once plants flower.* Week 1: Prune out and destroy old fruiting canes of raspberries after harvest is complete.* Week 1: Blackberries are ripening now.* Weeks 2-3: Apply second spray to trunks of peach trees for peach borers.* Week 2: Dig potatoes when the tops die. Plant fall potatoes by the 15th.* Weeks 3-4: For the fall garden, sow seeds of collards, kale, sweet corn and summer squash as earlier crops are harvested.Page 2 of 2 - * Weeks 3-4: Set out broccoli, cabbage, and cauliflower transplants for the fall garden.* Weeks 3-4: Early peach varieties ripen now.* Week 3: Sweet corn is ripe when the silks turn brown..* Week 3: Keep cukes well watered. Drought conditions will cause bitter fruit.* Week 3: Harvest onions and garlic when the tops turn brown.* Week 4: Sow seeds of carrots, beets, turnips, and winter radish for fall harvest.* Week 4: Thornless blackberries ripen now.Gardening is good exercise, and heaven knows I need that.My primary care provider says I need a lot of work.