Growing Your Own Garden

I desperately want to grow my own herb garden with thyme (because thyme is my favorite spice) and dill and rosemary.

I also want to grown my own produce. Cucumbers, peppers of all sorts, tomatoes and onions.

I blame the Food Network, Giada and Ina. Damn wonderful women!

The earth under the house Husband and I rent does not lend itself to doing much else than growing weeds, and even they don’t always survive.

I will not grow my garden at this house, but I will dream about growing my garden some day in a house I own in a garden I’ve nurtured.

I do, however, have one other problem…

I have no green thumb. I kill plants, I swear.

My grandfather and grandmother – both people with the brilliant ability to grow a garden of flowers, grasses and produce to put every other home on the block to shame – taught me how to garden.

(You will never know how amazing those tomatoes tasted.)

As a child, I constantly got distracted by worms and lady bugs and frogs and collecting them and putting them in my mud pies.

I suppose I was always meant to mess up cooking – not gardening.

Follow a few steps to create a brilliant garden that easy to take care of? Um. Yes.

Grow Your Own
By Stacy Adimando

STEP 1. Pick easy–to–grow fruits and veggies
Focus on produce you like, then throw in one you’re less familiar with, like Chinese eggplant or yellow carrots. “It will inspire you to get creative in the kitchen,” says gardener Rose Marie Nichols McGee, author of The Bountiful Container (Workman, 2002). Make sure your growing space can accommodate the plants you choose: Smaller foods like radishes and herbs generally won’t need more than 10 inches to grow, but larger ones such as tomatoes and potatoes may need up to 25 inches.

STEP 2. Shop for the right equipment
You don’t need an elaborate tool shed–just a small trowel and a basic organic fertilizer. If you’re growing indoors or in containers outdoors, pick up pots for your plants–or use any deep container like a bucket, serving bowl, or colander that has a hole for drainage, says Nichols McGee. Fill them with organic potting soil, which drains much better than dirt imported from your yard.

STEP 3. Choose between seeds and seedlings
Seedlings, which have already sprouted a few leaves, will start producing food more quickly than seeds, but some plants like beans, squash, and cucumbers won’t flourish when you transplant them to your garden and are best planted using seeds. Seeds that are older than a year may not germinate, so check the packet for a use–by date.

STEP 4. Set fertilizing and watering schedules
Research the best times to fertilize your plants–most will require fertilizer when first planted, and some will call for replenishing fertilizer as they grow. “Beware of overfertilizing, which can burn plants or force them into the flowering stage too early,” says Nichols McGee. This can result in bitter tasting and less abundant produce. Water plants well once or twice a day, preferably in the morning and evening, when they’re out of the strongest sunlight. Midday watering can give leafy plants brown spots.

A garden shall be the next thing I conquer.

Do you garden? I wish!

What do you grow?

3 thoughts on “Growing Your Own Garden

  1. tuesday2

    I kinda garden. Every spring my best friend gives me a few random (almost dead) tomato, green pepper, and red pepper plants. I manage to bring them back to life and call those few pots full of veggies my ‘garden’

    One day I will graduate to a full size, real garden, but for now- this is my farming experience. :D

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    • skinnyshae

      I want to graduate to a flower pot garden! That’s the best first step, especially since I don’t think anything good will grow in our soil.

      Do you secretly wish you lived on a ranch and had chicken and crops and cows and stuff? That’s my secret dream!

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