Hello Fellow Gardener! I'm so glad you've dropped by! Let me tell you a little about myself and how I started gardening. You can blame my mother. She always had me with her when she planted out her annuals every summer - rose moss, petunias, and impatiens - I remember them well!
So, when I finally was out on my own, I followed suit - except that my very first garden was a patio garden at my first apartment. It was beautiful! Tons of pots filled with color. It livened up that drab little brown porch. So much so, that the apartment managers left me "thank you" notes for bringing some beauty to the complex!
After that, it was some time until I had my own garden again. I joined the Navy and went "out to sea", sort to speak. I didn't have my own space to garden, but I did learn a few things from my Italian landlords who grew almost all of their produce and fruit themselves. And it was there, in Italy, that I really learned how good homegrown tasted!
ALL the produce in Italy was fantastic! Why? Because it was all locally grown, by local farmers. In fact, I think the only imported produce was what was sold on the military base. So, you can bet that I rarely shopped there. Oh no! I went to all those cute little Italian mercados (markets) on my drive home from work.
To make a long story shorter, when I got married a few years later and we had our first home on base, the first thing I wanted to do was grow a garden! And I did.... in a bunch of Big Lots garden pots! The soil was apparently contaminated and it was "against code" to plant in the ground. So, I adjusted my plan and decided to grow everything in pots!
I don't know what sparked the interest, but I had decided to start my plants from seed. I spent hours researching which varieties I wanted to grow (I choose heirloom), and I ordered all my seeds from one of my favorite companies to this day, Seed Saver's Exchange.
I started those seeds in egg shell cartons and moved them back and forth across my house every day, from one sunny window sill to the next until they were ready to plant out.
I had heard about a book called Lasagna Gardening by Patricia Lanza (still one of my absolute favorite gardening books!) and I set out to do Lasagna Garden in my pots. And it worked FABULOUSLY!
I used grass clippings and leaves from our yard, horse manure and straw from a local horse stable, fruit & veggies scraps, bags of coffee grounds from Starbucks (they'll give them to you for free!), and peat moss (because it wasn't such a bad thing back in the day). And I'm telling you, my plants were GORGEOUS! Until....
Until they all got washed away in a flood that sent our family packing to another home.
That's right. I lost everything. I was devastated... but I was also determined. Though I had lost all my precious plants, I went back for the pots, scrubbed them clean and started again at our next house.
And really, that was the beginning. And I just kept growing (pun intended) from there!
Every year since (that was in 2009), my garden has grown bigger, and my skills as a gardener have grown too! I've made A LOT of mistakes and learned from them. I've read a lot, experienced a lot, and GROWN A HECK OF A LOT MORE!
It's been a blast and I don't plan on stopping!
➡️ Help others find their love of gardening! ⬅️
I LOVE TO TEACH - always have! So, I started The Gardening Forum back in 2020 per the prompting of a friend. And I really need to thank that friend, because her suggestion has led me here to you!
All those garden tutorials and garden tours lit a fire in me to reach more people and really help them become the gardener they've always wanted to be, or at the very least, have the garden they've always wanted to have.
SO, HERE I AM! READY AND WAITING TO HELP YOU!
This guide will help you think through every aspect of planning your garden, including WHO you're growing the garden for, WHAT plants you should grow, WHEN you should plant them, and WHY you're growing a garden in the first place.
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