My Gardening Diary: Overboard, Overwhelmed & Overloaded

I’m starting a gardening diary, mostly to keep a record for myself, so I can learn from my mistakes and achievements.

It’s exciting that this year our home garden has expanded, and I hope all our hard work will pay off into a wonderful harvest that will last into the cooler months.

One of the first lessons learned was when I went crazy-overboard buying veggie plants.

I bought a Groupon for $30 worth of plants for a cost of only $15.

Last Friday, I drove to McCue’s Gardening Center with a rough-draft of a shopping list for veggie plants. I knew I wanted tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers, with maybe a few herbs thrown in.

I walked out with 3 flats of plants (eight 6-packs in each flat) which, after my $15 Groupon was applied, only cost about $33. Yes, a bargain, but problem was, I was so overwhelmed and excited to see so many different veggies, there was no forethought regarding how many plants were needed, in relation to the actual space for gardening!

In reality, 2 flats would have been plenty, especially since they allowed a mix-match of plants, as long as they were the same price! Next year, I will know better!

So, here are my veggies

  • Tomatoes: a full flat = 48 plants – thankfully, my dad took 4 for his home garden, but it still leaves me with 44.
  • Peppers, Sweet & Chili: 5 pks = 30 plants
  • Little Fingers Eggplant: 1 pk = 6
  • Pickling Cucumbers: 3 pks = 9 (only 3 to a pk)
  • Butternut Squash: 1 pk = 3 (only 3 to a pk)
  • Red Cabbage: 1 pk = 6
  • Brussels Sprouts: 1 pk = 6
  • Lettuce, Red: 2 pks = 12
  • Basil: 2 pks = 12
  • And a separate purchase for DH because he wanted to grow it — Sugar Baby Watermelon: 2 plants

Seriously, where am I going to put all of those plants!?

We planted some of the veggies this weekend. We had to dig up new beds, sifting soil by hand, digging & sifting compost out back. It was very time-consuming and a lot of work. I also planted some in containers: both lettuce plants, 2 brussels sprouts and 1 cabbage.

DH decided it would be better to pick up a yard/truckload of high quality compost/dirt; total cost only $15. A small price to pay to save time and effort for planting the rest.

I’ll keep planting more veggies in what’s left of the containers and the rest will have to wait until this weekend when we’ll have more time to dig out at least one more bed.

In the past, I was neglectful, but this season, I’ll be caring for my babies properly, with “food” and lots of water. It will certainly be a learning experiment, and I really hope that all the hard work will pay off. And just think, next year, most of heavy work will be done. We can re-use the beds and possibly even add wooden boards or cement blocks to make them officially “raised”

Life is good!

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