The Satisfaction of Small-Scale Gardening

With another spring upon us you might want to consider trying to grow a garden to help fill your pantry and refrigerator.  Of course, if you have never gardened before, or – as in my own case – have tried with middling success then you may look forward to this ritual with a sense of foreboding almost on a par with doing taxes.  But there is a satisfaction that comes with successfully gardening that makes it worthwhile.  My family enjoys the taste of fresh herbs that come from outside. And I enjoy not paying for items shipped across the continent when they can be grown and picked right next to my patio.

So where do you start?  First, select a few items that you want but that won’t overwhelm you.  My wife and I split the tasks: she maintains the flowers while I work on the produce and herbs.  We grow a selection of herbs with two or three vegetables.  It may not seem like much but you are often surprised at the amount that can come from a few well-tended plants.  I also try to keep my wife in the spirit of the activity by getting her some attractive outfits she can wear when tending her plants or just when relaxing and enjoying them outdoors.  A few purchases from Talbots usually serves this purpose since they offer a great selection of women’s casual attire and accessories to wear outside or at informal gatherings.  A Groupon coupon or promo code can assure that I can get her things for 40% off the list price.  And I can be certain she will enjoy them.  It’s fun to see my wife puttering about her garden in her latest outfit from Talbots.

When you have limited space, it is better to pick plants that grow best in pots.  There are many vegetables – bush beans, tomatoes, squash, zucchini, etc. that you can grow successfully even out on your terrace when you live in the heart of the city.  I like my “herb staircase” – an old bookcase I modified to hold pots of various herbs at different levels.  It is decorative while providing space for different herbs to grow.  We run outside regularly to clip them to season our meals.  My wife and I are now getting our little garden started for this year, and look forward to enjoying the fruits of our efforts.