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Gardening Tailored For You

Dee May 14, 2013

 Gardening Tailored For You

 

To some, gardening is an intimidating thing.  It doesn”t have to be.  Gardening can be as simple or as complex as you want to make it.  My gardening expertise has definitely evolved over the years.  I”ve gone from killing house plants to having a big plot this year.  So I”ll walk you through the options that are available and you can tailor it to your needs.  The biggest thing to keep in mind is that by doing it yourself, you are in control of whether or not genetically modified food is entering your home, whether pesticides are used, and how fresh it is.

Small Spaces

For small spaces, such as apartments and houses shared with others, I would suggest an herb garden in the home.  Choose quality potting soil.  Find pots that have drainage so if you over water, it can pour out the bottom and leave the roots aerated.   Herbs have a way of multiplying beyond your control.  They”re easy to grow.  They need very little care.  They”re amazing for cooking.  If you grow too much you can share with others or freeze them.  To freeze, cut, chop, and freeze in a little olive oil in an ice cube tray.  I measure mine out first and then you have fresh herbs for any meal you need.  You can even add them to vegetable smoothies.   Herbs have many medicinal properties as well so they”re a good starter plant.

Potted Gardens

This was my next step.  The potted garden.  I like to decorate so I chose colorful pots.  If you get the huge pots from a gardening store.  Place empty bottles or packaging peanuts in the bottom.  This keeps the pot from getting too heavy and allows the roots to breath and drain.  Choose plants that grow up and not out such as tomatoes or peppers.  Read up on fertilizers.  Tomatoes can get “bottom rot” in pots which is really just due to a lack of calcium in the soil.  I ground up antacid and put it in the dirt solving my problem very inexpensively.  Potted plants will need to be fertilized.  I would recommend finding a natural fertilizer such as fish emulsion.  Or if you have a fish tank, use the water from the tank changes to pour over your plants.  It”s helped many of my plants bounce back from near death experiences.

Small Beds

With a small bed, I wanted something that required little care and that would keep producing for me.  Berries are a great pick for this purpose.  Strawberries, raspberries, or even rhubarb or asparagus spread.  Having them in a small bed is nice because they won”t take over everything else.  We have one raised bed with raspberries, a small bed with strawberries, and I”m contemplating planting asparagus in a separate location this Chapter 5 covers virtualization and big how to recover a deleted file in more detail. year.  They will reproduce every year so you won”t have to worry about them.  I still fertilize once a week to ensure the best yield for my work.  These are tough plants to kill, they”ve survived 2 dogs that dig and 2 toddlers that dig and we keep seeing them best online casino come back.

Large plots

If preparing a plot in your backyard there are a few things you need to do to prep.

  1. First, rent a sod cutter from a local gardening supply store.  Cut out the top layer of grass so you aren”t fighting grass with your produce.
  2. If you have poor soil, I would recommend getting a mix of compost and top soil or peat and top soil hauled in.  We did this to cover about 2 inches of our area.
  3. Rent a garden tiller to mix your soil with the top soil and loosen up the dirt so the roots get air.
  4. Find out what grows in your area and when.  Smartgardener.com allows you to plan your garden based on your plot and the location you live in.  It also tells you what plants grow best next to each other.  It”s such an amazing tool and has helped me a lot.
  5. Choose organic, non-gmo seeds.  Burpee.com has these available and the CEO of the company has a statement about this on their website.  I contacted them to make sure what we had were safe.  There are also many other online seed companies.   I chose Burpee out of convenience.  They were at our local hardware store.
  6. Read the back of the seed packet and follow the instructions.
  7. Then water, water, water and weed, weed, weed.

And Finally…enjoy whatever you choose

The garden should be meant for you.  Enjoy it.  Plant what you like.  Most produce can be frozen.  I freeze my tomatoes in quart sized bags so I can thaw them out in the exact portion size for my favorite tomato soup recipe.  By freezing them you save them at their peak and you”ll get the most nutritional benefit from them during the winter months when you”re dreaming of green acres.  Play in the dirt.  Let your kids help and they”ll be more likely to eat them too.  Kids love water!  Give them that job.

A garden can require as much or as little time as you want.  Make it fun.  Make it local (your home!).  Make it yours!

Do You Have A Garden Going This Year?

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I'm a mama to three boys who keep me busy and a wife to a supportive husband who has grown with me. I had a heart attack 4 years ago that you can read more about on my blog which has lead me to a more passionate pursuit of physical, mental, and spiritual health. My faith in Christ is the core of who I am. Without Him, I wouldn't be here. Come visit me at my blog reclaimed-life.com
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2 Comments

  1. My husband and I planted our first “real” garden this year, I’ve always had herbs and last year we did tomatoes and peppers. So far we have harvested spinach, kale, zucchini, and strawberries. Some of our other plants include tomatoes, peppers, green beans, cantaloupe, cucumbers, carrots, and onions. We are using 8 small to medium raised beds.

    I am having a hard time with some of my medicinal herbs though, lavender, lemon balm, echinacea, and chamomile. I started them in egg cartons, but once I moved them to pots, they didn’t really do much.

    Reply

    • Jerri Ann,

      Did you transplant them immediately into the ground or did you let them acclimate to the outdoor climate a day or two? Sometimes just the temperature/climate change from indoor starter plants to outdoor harvest plants can cause “transplant” shock. You can lessen it by letting the starter plants acclimate to the outdoor temperatures and fertilizing them well so they have extra nutrients to draw on during the transplant “stress.”

      It sounds like the rest of your garden is flourishing! You should have a lot to enjoy in the coming months!

      Dee

      Reply

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I’m Kate, mama to 5 and wife to Ben.  I love meeting new people and hearing their stories.  I’m also a big fan of “fancy” drinks (anything but plain water counts as ‘fancy’ in my world!) and I can’t stop myself from DIY-ing everything.  I sure hope you’ll stick around so I can get to know you better!

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