Garden Gettin' Ready
When we lived on the farm and I practiced season extension, I would start my to-do list, my getting-dirty to-do list, in early March. Now, living in the city and growing in our urban garden, my getting-dirty garden chores begin right about now, middle to the end of April.
I start now because I have been:
Waiting for my soil to reach 50 degrees.
Waiting for Mr. Sun to show his face more than the rain drops.
Waiting for the threat of frost to be a comfortable distance away.
We’re Here! We’ve made it!
Garden To Do (this week):
1. Planting Dahlias
2. Planting hardy annuals (veggie and flowers) (more tender veggies and flowers to be planted in a couple weeks)
3. Turning soil in beds
4. Making new garden markers
5. Paint trellis’ new color
6. Pulling weeds
7. Applying a balanced organic fertilizer into the beds that are welcoming plants
Greenhouse To Do (this week):
1. Hit starts with fish emulsion
2. Pot-up flower starts into larger pots
This year, because I just gave birth to our fourth child, I planned a garden with a focus on easy breezy maintenance and plants while minimizing crops and practices that take too much effort and time to produce excellent results.
Every year our garden looks and feels different-- it kind of ebbs and flows with what and where our family is landing and feeling for that year. This year, pumpkins, potatoes, easy flowers, cucumbers, berries, peas, tomatoes, peppers, carrots, corn and beans will be our main crops, with a sprinkling of others to harvest and munch on throughout the season. For the first time in almost a decade, I will not be growing lettuce as harvesting and cleaning of garden lettuce is just too high maintenance. Oh how we will miss the sweet, tender, delicious salads we love and look forward to every summer.
As you prepare to dig in the dirt and get your garden a’going, remember that it is entirely ok to minimize your idyllic urban spread. Consider how much time and energy you have this summer to maintain your growing space and give yourself realistic expectations to dive in to. Over-growing and over-promising your soul a garden that isn’t truly manageable will only leave you feeling discouraged, frustrated and a lot less stoked for the following season.
Remember always that growing vegetables and flowers is equal parts an emotional experience as it is a technical one--hosting a smaller space for discouragement is a welcomed practice.