When we moved to Heber City last fall there were two things I was happy to see at the house we found to rent: a fenced back yard and a little vegetable garden spot. Now that we’ve been here for seven months and we’re getting into garden planting time, I’ve found some other things I like about it. And some other things that maybe I don’t like so much. The following is a list of the assets and liabilities, according to my gardening views and preferences, of this property.
- bulbs – it’s so fun to see what has been coming up that I had no idea were even there when we moved in: daffodils, hyacinth, tulips, and I believe frittilaria are coming up now
- since I didn’t plant the bulbs myself, I’ve been much more grateful rather than upset for the bouquets of them that Grace has picked for me
- lupine that appears to be self-sowing
- various planting spaces
- quackgrass – this is going to be my biggest weed problem by a long shot
- the Canada thistle I found growing in one bed could also prove to be problematic
- the shrubby shrub in the front that can’t decide if it’s alive or dead
- the dead aspen in the front yard
Like I mentioned in the assets list, there are various planting spaces around the house. And I intend to use them all, regardless of their quirks in size, situation, and current plants. We’ve already got peas, carrots, and beets seeded in the rectangular vegetable box in the back yard. That’s also where I’ll plant the corn, okra (an experiment, per my daughter’s request), and a tomato or two. I have some containers (read: buckets) that I’ll plant some herbs and a cucumber in. I’ll probably plant a pumpkin in the small squarish bed with the two random shrubs out front. My zucchini and Swiss chard may go in another of the flower beds and then I’ll fill in with nasturtium, sunflower, zinnia, and cosmos (in other words, whatever other flower seeds I still have left over from last year). Will it make the weird plantings even weirder? Probably. Do I care? Not especially. One of the beauties of renting as opposed to owning is letting go and just embracing and making do with what I have.
I’ve been hearing how lately there has been a growing interest in gardening. Perhaps you are among the people who are interested in growing more of your own food, but maybe you live in an apartment or other small space. Or maybe you are renting and can’t really dig up a garden spot. You can follow my lead and plant vegetables in whatever garden spots already exist. If you can grow sun-loving annual flowers, you can grow sun-loving vegetables like peppers or tomatoes.
But if there’s no existing patch of dirt? Here’s where growing in containers can help you scratch that gardening itch. I’ve got a couple posts to get you started:
Or maybe instead of inspiring you to grow your own food, all this talk of gardening is adding stress to your life by making you think you have one more thing to add to you “to-do” list. If that’s the case, stop reading and go find something that does fill your cup.
What are you planting (or not planting) this year?