“To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow.” –Audrey Hepburn
Why You Should Plant a Garden
When Arthur Miller wrote of Willy Loman’s obsession for getting seeds in the ground in “Death of a Salesman,” it was obviously a metaphor for the future. Sowing seeds is symbolic of creating something that will, hopefully, last. A garden, in all its poetic beauty, is also very real sustenance that nourishes our bodies. There’s nothing better than fresh, homegrown vegetables. Gardening is also a wonderful and very fulfilling hobby.
On Growing a Garden
From germinating seeds indoors on your windowsill to transplanting them outdoors: whether you’re planting your own vegetables, herbs or flowers, here are some tips to get you started. Keep in mind that your handy Farmer’s Almanac is always a great resource for information!
Not everyone has the great luxury of a large gardening plot; many of us in cities who live in apartments must resort to window boxes, sills, fire escapes, and roofs.
- Starting your garden from a single seed indoors has lots of benefits, including a head start on growing season.
- If you decide to sow seeds, you won’t have to buy transplants or small plants (this is a more costly option). Watching something grow from a tiny seed is greatly rewarding and satisfying. It’s also good to know exactly where your veggies come from!
- When should you plant? Sowing seeds at the right time is essential. If you start too early, your “plants may have outgrown their pots before the weather has warmed up enough to plant them outside. But start seeds too late and they won’t have enough time to reach maturity before the end of the growing season.”
- Depending on where you live, your Almanac will have listings of times to start sowing seeds. “As a general rule, most annual vegetables should be sown indoors about six weeks before the last frost in your area.”
- You may have heard of Hydroponic farming; this is essentially growing vegetables without soil. People tend to grow their own lettuces vertically in containers using this method.
Vegetables to Plant
Some veggies are more suited to grow indoors than others, while some are also ideal for sowing from seed, including peppers, tomatoes, eggplant, etc.
Some favorites that are always popular (and relatively easy to grow) include:
- Lettuces (including arugula, butter, and romaine)
- Growing avocadoes in jars is actually a very simple activity and are attractive to look at as well.
- Sprouts (grown in a Mason jar) are popular, too. They add the perfect amount of crunch to any salad or sandwich and are filled with Vitamin C. Broccoli sprouts are considered a “superfood.” These young plants (which are seeds that have germinated) will thrive in a covered jar where the sprouts have been watered, drained, rinsed, and aired out. For precise instructions, check out these tips from the Spruce.
Herbs to Plant
An herb garden is a must for anyone who loves to cook! Whether in jars, window boxes, or on a sill, there’s something very cozy about having an herb garden indoors. Herbs can either be started from seeds or as plants (seeds are preferable for those on a budget). Your plants should receive “two inches (or five centimeters) of water every week.” It’s very important to start harvesting your herbs early; this will ensure new foliage and is actually good for your plants. You’ll end up producing more as a result. Once you begin harvesting your herbs, you’ll have all sorts of fresh garnishes to turn any meal into a gourmet treat. With just a few sprinklings of thyme or basil, not only will your kitchen smell wonderful, your dishes will have the perfect seasoning.
Try planting some of these tried and true favorites:
For more information on the content mentioned in this blog (and on sowing seeds, indoor planting, etc.), check out the links below:
(Images sourced from Countryfarm Lifestyles and House & Home.)