Five garden goals for 2018
|A spring scene at Winterthur, in this file photo.|
In January, it is normal for people to declare and commit to resolutions for the New Year. I feel gardeners often do the same. This will be the year they pull out the weeds before they take over the front garden, or perhaps there will be a declaration to fit more gardening time into one’s schedule.
Of course, some things are out of a gardener’s control, such as an extremely rainy growing season that brings with it relentless pesky slugs. Or in the opposite scenario, scorching heat that makes watering upkeep an impossible task. Each growing season will bring with it its own set of challenges, and luckily, gardeners tend to be an accommodating group.
Putting the extreme circumstances aside, what about the items that you do have control over? Here are my top five gardening resolutions – or goals – for 2018.
Become a better composter. I have rabbits who are litter box trained, which means their litter box contents can be put into the compost pile. I need to be better about doing this, because rabbit poop makes great fertilizer, too. Lately I’ve gotten lazy and I haven’t been composting as much food because I don’t’ have an enclosed composter that will keep mice out. But when I throw out food scraps, I’m starting to feel really guilty, so I know this is something I need to change this season.
Get up earlier and spend 20 minutes in the garden. This is going to be the hardest resolution to keep, but I’m up for the challenge. In the past I’ve repeatedly told my husband that I just don’t have enough time in the day to get done what I want to do outside. But I figure if I spend a little time each day chipping away at garden tasks, I’ll be able to stay more on top of what I need to do. And as we advance to summer, there’s definitely going to be more daylight available in the morning before I go to work.
Grow more vegetables designed to fit my space. When I visited California for the Veggie Trials in August with the NGB Plant Nerds, I came away with a much greater appreciation for all the different types of varieties of food we can grow. But instead of trying to grow everything, I need to narrow my scope. For example, I have mostly part sun conditions, so obviously, I should focus on plants that can do well in part sun (lots of leafy greens fall in this category). I don’t really have room for sprawling indeterminate tomatoes, so I should focus on more compact varieties.
Grow food that we will actually eat. I like to grow beans, but we are really bad about harvesting and eating them. This year I want to focus on growing more vegetables we will actually consume, such as peas, lettuces, spinach, celery, peppers and tomatoes. I’m sure a few other varieties will find their way into the mix, but I’m going to try to stick with plants that will produce food that will actually find its way onto the dinner plate.
Create an interactive area in the garden. In the past I’ve used Facebook Live or the Live feature on Instagram to broadcast from my garden. This year, I want to create a designated area where filming can occur. I’m working on creating a backdrop to be used in this area.
Of course, I plan on blogging more about my garden and gardening in general in 2018 than I did in 2017. What are your gardening goals for 2018?