Mar 13, 2010

How does your garden grow?

I killed a Chia pet in college. No, wait - TWO chia pets, and a bonzai tree. To say that I have a black thumb is an understatement...when it comes to growing things, I am the Angel of Doom. I'm lucky that my kids don't get planted!

But regardless of my inadequacies in the past, I think this is the year I'm going to take the plunge. I can't deny the financial benefits to having a garden, and we finally have room to make it happen.(Having a helpful toddler who likes dirt is just an added bonus!) I have many fond memories of growing veggies with my mom as a kid, I just wish I had paid more attention to what she was doing and less time playing with the caterpillars...

I've been doing a lot of reading, and have settled on Square Foot Gardening - the basic idea is that instead of planting in a big area, you plant in an organized grid, with one item densely planted in each square. It's a raised garden bed so there's no tilling or treating the soil necessary. And because of the way you are instructed to plant, there's less weeding and it's easier to rotate plantings. I found the book All New Square Foot Gardening: Grow More in Less Space! at my local library, but you can also purchase it on Amazon or the main website.

There's a small area of my yard where we can set up a 2'x8'grid, but I've read a few people who did container gardens on their deck/patio with each pot being an individual area of the "grid". What appeals to me is that there's minimal weeding (my back prevents me from being hunched over for long periods of time), and I can deal with the whole IDEA of gardening in small chunks - I wanted to plant last year, but the whole process of starting a garden in the "traditional" way really overwhelmed me...I'm sure being pregnant didn't help either!

And how timely is hero Erin over at $5 Dinners just posted a couple of great links - one about getting free seeds and another about free printable garden planners!

I signed up for my free seeds, and I'll be plotting my garden and making my supplies list this weekend - spring thaw is finally hitting Massachusetts, and I'm going to TRY not to kill my plants this year! Wish me luck!

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Amy said...

I think I'm a little too late this year, but you've definitely "planted" the idea for next year!

Keely said...

I love my garden. I have WAY too much space, so I end up weeding a lot, but I've pared it down this year to just two 8x8 raised beds and I think I can handle that.

Look up "companion planting", if you're planting that close - there's a great book called "Carrots Love Tomatoes" - the idea is that some plants like being close to others, and they grow better. Might offset your black thumb ;)

Lory said...

I am so excited to start my garden this year. It has been too long since I have ahad one. Thanks for the book suggestion, I ordered it from my library.