Monday, June 13, 2011
For the past several years, I have had this hankering to plant a garden. I've started to a few times--but never stuck with it long enough to actually grow much. The main reason is that my sister Skylar was always the resident gardener (she has the greenest thumb I have ever beheld!), and was naturally in charge of anything garden-y that our family attempted. I'm sure she would have had no problem letting me tinker around a bit, but I always thought I'd just get in her way. The second reason is that I have stayed SO BUSY over the years, I just haven't had the time to put into a garden to really make it beautiful. So, the only thing I have to show for my dabbling in the gardening arts is one potted Oregano plant that I have taken special care of for about five years.
Enter new house, new husband, three acres of my own land to do what I want with, and a lot more free time. It was time to start that garden!
Starting small, I planted herbs in some stair-step beds that were overgrown with a really stubborn vine when we moved in. Nasturtium seeds were planted along the edges of each bed, for a splash of color. The herbs did wonderfully, and are thriving now. How nifty to walk out your kitchen door and have any herb you need for cooking at your fingertips!
And then came the veggie garden. About a month ago, Davis came home with about 15 locally grown vegetable plants--okra, zucchini, yellow squash, banana peppers, and two different types of cucumbers (for pickling, of course!). Mrs. Green-thumb (aka Skylar) gave us three lovely tomato plants that she had grown from seed to add to our little plot. We made up a simple bed in the back yard, right outside the kitchen (convenient!), and planted those babies in the soil.
Since then, our garden has grown--a lot. We have added a row of yellow beans and lima beans, carrots, cotton and corn--all started from seed. We have also started a bevy of flowers from seed--dahlias, zinnias, columbines, sunflowers, hollyhocks, forget-me-nots, poppies, and something else which is escaping me right now. ;) Let me tell you, once you start planting from seed, it is hard to stop. The process is so rewarding! And so amazing! You stick a little seed in the dirt, and in a few weeks you have a living, thriving (hopefully) plant. It is one thing to buy ready-grown plants from a nursery, but when you grow your own plants on your back porch (or in your greenhouse) you begin to feel a deeper connection to, and understanding of, the earth and its Creator. At least I do.
If you have never grown something before, let me encourage you to give it a try. Buy yourself a package of seeds and some potting soil, and watch something beautiful happen when you mix the two together. It is thoroughly enlivening.