July 30, 2014

garden 2014



“If you want to be happy for a lifetime, be a gardener” – Anonymous

At the age of 28, I realize that having a garden has filled a piece of my sole. There is something about sowing that first seed, watering, feeding it, & watching the plant grow into a thriving, living, beautiful life form that completes you. Knowing that when you harvest your crop that you had a hand in sustaining life.

This summer has been absolutely amazing for the Iowan Gardener like myself. We had record rainfall in June with below temperatures in July. I can remember last year having to haul my garden hose down to the hill and across the yard every other day to keep my plants from wilting and dying from the 90… 100+ degree temps. This year I have been away weeks on end due to work trips and have not worried once whether my husband would remember to water the garden, nature did it for me.

Gardening has always been a hobby that {G} and I enjoy spending time on together. We usually split the chores in the garden. {G} tills and helps sow the seeds. I water, plot out the garden, and transplant the seedlings into the soil. {G} fertilizes and sprays for pest. I maintain by stringing tomatoes, cutting back vines, and spread out the straw as mulch. During the harvest season we like to walk down to the garden in the evenings and talk about what has changed from day to day. We also enjoy harvesting the crop together.

I believe that couples that garden together share something special. I can see it in my best friend who also has a husband that shares a love of gardening. Like us, they work together in maintaining, harvesting, and canning their crops. Many of us use different strategies… Organic… no spray… spray… alternate practices but I believe that’s why our relationships thrive. Call my silly but I believe that Conversations/ Discussions about how you will grow your garden can compare to many discussions you have about other things in your marriage. How do you prepare for other events in your life? How to do care for personal property? How do you set aside time? How do you deal with set backs and disappointments? There is so much joy and pride that goes into gardening that can reflect in a relationship.

This week our first round of red potatoes were ready to harvest. We have never planted potatoes before so we weren’t sure what to expect. I can’t find words to express our excitement when we dug and had whole, red, bug free, beautiful potatoes in our hands. We were giddy with excitement and couldn't wait to cook them up for supper. What a way to bond. What a special moment to share.


Home made potato salad. Potatoes from the garden and eggs from our chickens.


Since I love my garden so much I wanted to share it with you. Here is a little tour of our garden.


West side of garden. Potatoes, Melons, Pumpkins, Broccoli, and Peas


East side of Garden. Cherry Tomatoes, Big Boy Tomatoes, Cucumbers, and Peppers




Jack be Little Pumpkin










The Fruits of Our Labor.

Coming from living in a suburban neighborhood I couldn’t have told you the first thing about vegetable gardening 10 years ago. My mother is a green thumb in floral gardens. Beautiful gardens that wrap the house and the curbs, ponds with lily pads and Hostas as big as your body. But never vegetables. I learned over the years through FFA involvement in high school, becoming an Ag major in college, and working at the Horticulture farms about technic. However, in all honesty, garden is trial and error. You can’t expect perfection in your first garden. Plants will die. Sometimes in the first week. You learn, you read, and you try again next year. Just give it a try, I bet you will surprise yourself.

If you ever have questions about gardening I’d be happy to try and answer them. I’m not an expert but I think we’re doing pretty well.

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