This is an evergreen topic for me. As soon as the weather warms a bit, I want to garden. My real problem is that I happen to have a black thumb. Over the years, I have managed to coax some yellow pear tomatoes into being. Some green beans. And herbs. Lots and lots of herbs, which work to my advantage when I want to add something fresh to the recipe at hand.
Here are five finds to get you gardening:
1. Topsy Turvy Tomato Planter. I cannot help myself. In spite of my black thumb I am dying to try this. It seems to make sense in so many ways, including the fact that I have to container garden, as I live in an apartment. Have you tried this one? Send us photos and tips and tricks. (They also make a tomato and herb planter, which might be ideal for someone like me!)
2. Gloves. Of leather. One of my gardening RULES. I don’t care what you are doing. True story: I was cutting the root ball of decorative grasses in half (this was when I had a yard) to replant. One of the reeds went through the mesh back of the glove I was wearing and into my hand, nicking a tendon. X-rays, ER, general anesthesia and one small surgical procedure later, they removed the piece of grass, which, dry, might as well have been a piece of sharpened steel. So do yourself a favor. Buy a nice pair of well-fitting, leather (leather front AND back, please) gloves. I loved these at Tractor Supply (I love that store).
3. Watering Can. I love the act of watering plants…something so soothing and nourishing about it. And I love a good-looking watering can. This one from Gardener’s Supply Company is pretty—a classic, Peter-Rabbit-worthy watering can.
4. Seedlings. Take a day and head to your local garden center for seedlings. I’ll be honest—I have tried countless times to grow things from seeds (it’s so inexpensive that way!!), but the wait isn’t worth it for me…and then I might over water, underwater, whatever. It’s painful for me. With seedlings, I know I have a good, healthy start right in front of me. My suggestions for herbs include basil, parsley, chives, dill, oregano, rosemary, lavender, cilantro, mint and thyme. Because those are my favorites. And because they grow for me. Pick your own favorites. You know you’ll use them!
5. Good planters. Another true confession. I buy the seedlings and then I don’t replant them quickly enough. Don’t be me!! Find containers you love (these are pretty) or break ground on a nice spot in your own yard and Get. The. Seedlings. Into. The. Ground. Do I make myself clear? If you’re using containers, don’t forget to get potting soil!! Water well.
Bonus: How about planting some edible flowers this year? Two edible flowers that do very well are nasturtiums, which have a peppery bite, and pansies, which, to me, have almost a wintergreen flavor. Toss a few into salads or garnish a steak with some flowers. A simple way to make any plate beautiful.
Want to read more? I enjoyed this article from The Tasteful Garden. The piece is filled with wisdom for growing herbs.