Wednesday, July 9, 2014

30 minute gardening- in a 5 minute post

I told my husband I could write a book called 30 minute gardening.   Because I love to garden, but my life now allows only about 30 minute chunks of time to work on any one thing.  (Or, for this blog, 5 minutes)

Background:  I am a gardener.  Its inherited from both grandparents.  Something about my pioneer ancestors makes it impossible for me to not dig in the dirt.  Even when we were living in our first apartment, I had pots and pots of plants, even in the bathroom!  Our first townhouse I had a 3x 3 plot by our grill where I crammed in tomatoes and basil. 

Caveat: I am not an amazing gardener.  My beds are not a pinterest post waiting to happen, but there is something in me that just cant NOT plant things.  Sometimes things go well, sometimes they flop. And I am now out of my perfectionism stage and am just thankful for anything that grows. So if you want a Martha Stewart garden, this advice is not for you.  If you have a million other things going on in life, but you want to grow some of your own food, read on.

Hidden Cache:  Essential for gardening- dont share your gloves, shoes or trowel.   Have a good pair of gloves (leather or plastic dipped kind) a good trowel and gardening shoes hidden away so  your children or husband cannot get them.  If your kids are like mine, they will borrow them for "just a minute" and then your gloves will be left out in the rain, your trowel will be buried in the sandbox and you will waste the little time you have hunting them down when you could be out in the garden.

Call in reinforcements:  When there is a big job, like turning over soil or pulling a mass of weeds, get help from those people you feed and clothe.  Boys love whacking at things with hoes, and husbands can give an hour to do the jobs that would take you and your wimpy arms twice as long.  You can do the planning, the planting, the picking, but for back breaking tasks, there is strength in numbers.

Dont waste your time on difficult plants:  I did squash last year.  Actually we did 3 kinds of squash and pumpkins.  We got some veggies, but eventually squash beetles got them all.  Guess what?  This year I didn't plant ANY squash.  I may never plant it again.  The way to get rid of squash beetles is to lay down on the ground and look for their holes in the stem and then slit open the stem to get them out.  Did you see how many steps that was?  and you have to do it EVERY DAY.   On top of that, my kids dont really like squash and they take up a lot of room in the garden.  So this year I planted lots of beans.  Beans are easy.  Beans are cheap.  Beans can freeze just great (You can can them too, but I dont like canned veggies)  Beans dont have many predators. 

OK, my 5 minutes are up.  If it wasnt so hot, I would go out to the garden now :)

1 comment:

  1. I love gardening too! My kids help me plant, weed, and harvest. It is definitely our summer thing together.