After some heavy rain last week, it’s time to cart Violet into the yard so we can work on our Tribute Garden. I’m not entirely sure how this endeavour will go because so far she has been more interested in pulling up the plants, rather than encouraging their growth.
Let me bring you up to speed on our efforts:
As I explained in THIS post, the garden area is very dark. Under the tutelage of an experienced gardener friend, I was instructed to monitor the hours of sunshine in the planting areas and subsequently research which plants require the corresponding amount of light.
It turns out that some leafy greens can flourish with as little as 2-3 hours of sun per day and peppers and carrots would be alright in one area of the plot that receives more light.
Next came the tilling. I bought myself a Garden Weasel and worked that land. I pushed and twirled so long and hard it was almost romantic.
Onward! To the local greenhouse/garden supply shop I went! These folks were really helpful and I bought some seeds as well as some pre-started plants.
Just in case you’re thinking, “Hey! That’s cheating! You bought pre-started plants!?” I have a response for you:
I want my first foray into gardening to be a positive one. I fully believe in the importance of food sustainability but I’m no farmer. I know my own personality enough to realize that if I don’t see results, I’ll probably quit. With less than perfect gardening conditions and no pre-existing gardening skills, I feel like I should set myself up for success.
Also, it’s kind of late in the season to start planting. (Note to fellow novice-gardeners: You can’t just up and start a garden whenever you get a hankering for some fresh produce.)
Another tip I’ve picked up: Plants are like goldfish. They do their own thing and it’s acceptable to leave them on their own for a few days and, in the initial days, you need to climatize them to their surroundings! I let my pre-started kale and pepper plants hang out in their new home for a few days before immersing them in the ground just like how you would dangle your new pet goldfish in a plastic bag in its aquarium before setting him free into the alarmingly cold expansive waters atop your dresser.
The next stage is where I made my first critical error of gardening that I hope will not have too harsh of effects. At the gardening shop I picked up some bags of composted manure and seaweed-treated soil (okay, my first error was calling it “dirt” and not “soil” at the gardening shop but I don’t figure that will actually impact the growth of my plants). I told them the estimated-dimensions of my garden and they recommended a quantity of soil/manure. When I got home I really felt like I had bought too much of the stuff to fill my tiny garden. I only used half of what they had sold me.
My cynical side believed I had been gouged. Imagine! Trying to upsell me on DIRT!
My realistic side figured that I had probably overshot on the dimensions I’d given.
Both sides were wrong. After again consulting my gardener friend, I was reminded that I was supposed to have removed some of the old crappy dirt to replace it with new crappy dirt! (See what I did there? Because I had to add manure, right? “Crappy” dirt…get it now?)
In any case, the plants had been planted and it was too late to turn back. Instead, we must wait to see what turns up! #MelHal