We had so much fun and such great success with last year’s garden that we are itching to expand and grow even more of our own food this summer. It seems far away but this is the time to start making plans so that when the ground thaws in the spring you’re not scrambling at the last second.
There are a few things that didn’t go well that I’d like to try again:
1) I really want to start my own seedlings, indoors.
I’m a plant murderer. I kill them all. I don’t mean to. I just…. forget. I forget to water or to move them out of the draft or into the sun or I forget to transplant. Maybe I have a maximum number of “things I can be in charge of keeping alive at one time” and all my mojo goes into the people and pets. I’m not sure. Still, I’m going to try it again. If we are ever going to really and truly be self-sufficient (or even close) when it comes to food I’m going to have to be able to grow things from seeds.
I got some new little plastic indoor greenhouse things on clearance at the end of last season so maybe those will help. Hopefully.
I adore lavender. I finally got a lovely plant last year and, in ignorance, put it in a terrible spot that got far too much water and, eventually, it was over-run by the ginormous freaky tomato plants that took over half the yard. This year I’ll try again, more wisely.
3) Potted herbs.
See, “plant murderer,” above. Still… I’m convinced that I have it in me to grow a little bit of basil in a pot without killing it. My sister, who has beautiful lush potted plants all the time, told me I’m potting them wrong. I’ll take her advice and try again. I think I can… I think I can… I think I can…
There are a few things that went well that I can’t wait to do again.
We are a tomato-eating family. We love them fresh, on sandwiches, in salsa, as sauce and juiced. Last year the tomatoes came and came and came until I was shoulder-deep in tomatoes and thought I never wanted to see another one.
This year I’ll plant even more.
Why? Well… because it’s only the middle of January and we’ve used up all but one jar of what we grew so, obviously we didn’t grow enough.
Last year we grew Sweet 100 Cherry Tomatoes and Big Boys. I’d like to do those again and perhaps add one or two new varieties as well.
I loved having fresh lettuce! Unlike the tomatoes, though, there can be too much of a good thing. We used a lot of space for lettuce and ended up with a massive crop and you really can’t preserve it. I’ll cut back a bit this time.
3) Bell peppers, jalepenos, cucumbers, zucchini, carrots, peas, onions and corn.
They all did great and they were so yummy! I can’t wait to plant them again!
Things I’m looking forward to growing/harvesting for the first time.
We planted and watched as it grew up all big and green and ferny and wild looking. Now, this year, it should be well-enough established that we will get to eat at least a few of those sweet, tender shoots. Yum!
Our garlic is already planted and snug under a nice layer of straw. I can’t wait to see the little green shoots pop up in the spring!
3) Hardy Kiwis.
I’m fascinated by the idea of a kiwi that grows in Michigan. I’m hoping to try these out and see how it goes.
I’ve seen this all over Pinterest. I’m eager to see if I can make it work. People make it sound like the simplest thing in the world.
Things I may just scrap this year.
My family was really excited about growing fresh watermelon but it seems we weren’t terribly thrilled about eating it. It takes a huge amount of space and half of what we grew ended up back in the compost bin. Maybe I’ll grow one or two vines but… probably I’ll just spend the $3 to buy one at the farmer’s market and that will be enough.
It didn’t grow well. No one seemed to care. We’ll probably just give that space over to something different this year.
To see some truly fabulous, inventive, pretty, creative and handy ideas from people far more clever than me visit my Pinterest “gardening and outdoor stuff” board. If you have a gardening board too, leave the link in the comments. I’d love to follow it!
What am I forgetting?
What’s going in your garden this year?
Any tips or advice for a girl who’s still just learning to squish her toes in the dirt?
Are you, too, seeking to save the earth, promote world peace and raise productive citizens without expending too much effort?
If we work on our goals together, they may be a little easier to achieve!