IMG_6612Have you ever gardened? Have you grown something, anything, it could be an African Violet that you some how have not killed over a length of time?   Do you remember that feeling when it first grew. Maybe it popped out of the ground, or it just survived plant shock from it’s trip home from the hardware store.  Anyway, so it started to grow and you felt pride at what you had accomplished.

When you garden your plants tend to grow faster than a house plant and the buzz of it comes when you get to eat that plant.  You get to watch the leaves grow, or fruit pop out, or tubers form underground. Then when the items is at it’s peak you pick it and cook, can, freeze, eat, or dehydrate it.   There is such a buzz in feeding people with something you grew in your back yards.

I started gardening in 1997 when a friend of my husband’s invited me over to help her in her garden.  Now that I think back she had quite a sizable garden going.  She had a lot of acreage and lived in the country.   I have her that thank for sparking that passion.

At that point in my life I did not own a house so I started with planters and putting stuff into the beds at our rental.  The reality was that the soil was not good and I did not know anything about it.   A few years later we purchased a house and I build my first cinder block bed.  It was huge.  It was 10 stones by 14 stones and not on the only flat area in our yard.  It was an old playground area that was all pea gravel.  I did not really know enough about the light as I choose a place that did not get afternoon sun.

After a couple of years I moved my beds down the hill to build level cinder block beds into the slight hill side.  The beds were in much better locations as by then I had learned a lot about sun and it’s path across the yard.   I continued to add more beds until I had quite a few thinner beds.

I always want to build more beds but the reality is that it takes a few years to get good soil.  Every year I build my soil and a new bed just does not have that history and depth to the soil bacteria, fungi, and nutrients.  So like many things gardening is a long term project.

Now no matter what I have rambled on about so far, the reality is that gardening makes me feel good.  It slows my breathing and my pulse, it centers my emotions and it brings a smile to my face.   It may wipe me out with effort extended but I always feel used up, in a good way.  So, I guess I am saying I love gardening. I love what it produces and how it makes me feel.  I love the process the challenges and the rewards.