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Well, I guess I spoke too soon! I had just told a good friend that I didn’t have plans to try gardening this year. That escalated really quickly! Like one week later I was reviewing the farmer’s almanac, looking at potting benches, and measuring for raised garden beds. The truth is, we want to build our next home so I was intimidated by starting a garden at this time. What if I start the garden and we end up selling? What if I start the garden and don’t get to see it through all of the upcoming seasons? Are those reasons to not start the garden today? No they are not and I’m not letting them stop me!
Today, we live here and I’m up for the challenge that gardening brings. This will be my second and more intentional try at gardening. I had a small container garden 2 years ago (at the height of COVID-19) because why not right? I learned a lot about what went wrong, I saw my cucumbers vines grow bigger than me, and it was all gratifying. So, rather than wait again, I’m jumping in. If I only use my garden for a few months, so be it. Today, we live here.
Inspiration For My Garden
The inspiration for my garden is much more personal than you’d believe. As a young girl, my grandfather had a large garden. Every time I went to visit my grandparents in the country, I remember seeing the tall corn stalks and some of the garden peeking out before you even saw the house. I vividly remember specific crops from that garden and the way they tasted. Honestly, I’ve never tasted a cucumber or tomato like those. Seriously they were the best ever!
Now, I wish I would have asked more questions or I could just call my grandparents to ask my burning garden questions. Though they had a garden out of necessity, by the time I came around, it was more of a hobby. Due to convenience and more resources families no longer depend on gardens to feed them. However, there has been a growing trend to have gardens, no matter how much space you have.
So, simply put, I’m harvesting all of my childhood days in the country, remembering how hard my grandfather worked in his garden. Thankfully my family isn’t depending on food from this garden or I’d be in trouble. This garden will be a hobby that I hope to nurture and learn a lot of from. I hope to enjoy coffee and wine there as long as we live here. I’m sure my grandfather didn’t do that. HA!
Porch Rail Planters Summer 2020
Overall Plans for Garden / Back Porch
The general and simplified plan for the garden is to build raised garden beds, add hanging planters, fill porch railing planters with flowers, add a potting bench, and create a small seating on the back porch. Around the same time I had the container garden, I totally revamped our back porch. Two years later, I’m simplifying that area with the potting bench on one side and a seating area on the other side. I’m hopeful the potting bench will give me a workspace and organization for garden supplies.
Container Gardening 2020
What I’m Planting
Since I’m very much still a newbie gardener, I have this Almanac’s planting guide, which you can generate based on your zip code. I decided to scan my personal planting calendar and highlight the things I love/use frequently. Yes, I love certain plants and vegetables but that doesn’t mean I can just place them in the dirt and they will flourish. Though that’s something I may have done in the past, I have to be much more intentional with my planting. Gardening is a science and I have to follow the rules. I also don’t have a ton of space to work with so available space has to be considered for what I plant.
As of today, I’ve decided to plant basil, thyme, mint, cilantro, lettuce, okra, zucchini, cucumbers, and tomatoes. I may edit that list with more things or delete some things but a few things are certain. One, these plants can grown in my 9a garden zone. Two, I love and use all of them frequently. That’s a good start, right? I tackled the science part and what I use/love.
Raised Garden Bed
The raised garden beds are built but I have to add landscape fabric, fill with dirt, start seeds, and do some planting. Additionally, we were going to build a potting bench, however, I may purchase one. As for patio furniture, I’m looking for a conversation set or small sofa. We don’t entertain on the porch so small is better. It just needs to be a place to work outside, watch the kids play, etc. I have some options to choose from that I’ll share soon.
Thanks for following along on this garden journey with me. I know it won’t be easy but I’m looking forward to it. There are so many amazing gardeners that I admire (online and in real life) and will be pulling inspiration from. I’m looking forward to strolling my garden beds with coffee, wine, and harvesting all my country vibes.
See ya’ around,
DIY Raised Garden Bed Tutorial - Crystal Holliday with The Holliday Collective