In March of this year, I started to get an itch for a green thumb. After doing some research on at-home gardening, I became overwhelmed with excitement when I discovered how much is involved with starting a garden. As a self admitted shopaholic, I can proudly say that Lowes became my new favorite store.
I began by planting my seeds in a mini greenhouse container inside my house. Watching my seedlings sprout was pure enjoyment for me. When the plants became stable, I planted my zucchini, green peppers, and cucumbers outside in a 4X4 foot raised bed. Eager with anticipation, I tended to my plants every day, waiting for the beginning signs of a vegetable. The day I picked my first squash was such a liberating feeling! I even sent pictures of my first squash to at least 10 people! They all probably thought I was a little ridiculous but I didn’t care. As the season continued, I was so full of pride and delight due to the bounty that came from my small, but gorgeous garden. Once I became comfortable with my raised bed, I added a few potted plants, filling them with basil, cilantro, mint, chives, oregano, and stevia. I even added a hanging tomato plant!
Now, I have to admit, I had a little help from a dear friend and my next-door neighbor. Both gave me great tips on gardening 101. This year was my first year in attempting to have a garden, and I’m proud to call it a success.
I feel like everyone should experience gardening, especially at a young age. I have read articles explaining the educational and health benefits from starting community and school gardens. By creating a fun atmosphere, kids are bound to learn the importance of local, healthy foods. I mean how much more local can you get than your very own backyard?
Next spring, think ahead and start a garden. Buy a raised bed like I did, or grab a few flowerpots and plant some herbs! There’s tons of gardening blogs and websites out there to help you along the way. Encourage your kids or a neighborhood youngster to help and have them experience the same excitement I felt this summer!