On Gardening

"The best place to find God is in a garden. You can dig for him there." 

-George Bernard Shaw

Spinach, Swiss Chard, Lacinato Kale, Red Russian Kale, Beets, Cabbage, Carrots, Collard Greens, Cauliflower, and Garlic.

Spinach, Swiss Chard, Lacinato Kale, Red Russian Kale, Beets, Cabbage, Carrots, Collard Greens, Cauliflower, and Garlic.

A few months ago I wanted to grow my own veggies, thus began my gardening career.

I love gardening, but I'm a very hands off gardener. Maybe I don't actually enjoy gardening so much as the fact that seeds can turn into things that bursts forth from the ground--things that I in turn can eat.  Maybe I love how a little piece of dirt behind a dumpster in the city can be be transformed into a happy conversation piece for apartment dwellers who would have otherwise remained strangers. Maybe I just like digging around in the dirt with the snails and earthworms with whom I share my bounty. In any case, I dig it. 

Things I learned:

  1. Grow what you like - You're more prone to eat what you like. I eat lots of greens. 
  2. A little goes a long way- My plot is 5x10 feet and It produces more than enough to feed 5 people veggies every week.
  3. Things take time, so just be patient - Don't freak out! There's only so much that's in your control--healthy soil, enough water...thats about it. Be humble and let God and nature do the rest.
  4. Sometimes you have to kill snails - about 15 a week.
  5. Share a lot - I tell everyone in our apartment complex to steal from my garden. Sometimes, I leave bags filled with carrots, kale and such on my neighbors porch. It's at least 2/3rds the joy of having a garden.
  6. Enjoy yourself - You're growing a garden, not raising a baby. Allow for plenty of mistakes and have fun. 

Here's how it all went down:

Austin-Urban-Garden
Digging up dirt behind the dumpster.

Digging up dirt behind the dumpster.

Step Two:

Amanda setting a line and planting some seed. I learned about square foot gardening from The Great Outdoors, probably my favorite place to spend an Austin afternoon. 

Amanda setting a line and planting some seed. I learned about square foot gardening from The Great Outdoors, probably my favorite place to spend an Austin afternoon. 

Fear and doubt over my gardening abilities gripped me for about 8 days after we planted seeds, then these little guys began popping up. I still wasn't so sure...

Fear and doubt over my gardening abilities gripped me for about 8 days after we planted seeds, then these little guys began popping up. I still wasn't so sure...

“I've had a lot of worries in my life, most of which never happened.” - Mark Twain

“I've had a lot of worries in my life, most of which never happened.” - Mark Twain

2 Months Later:

Guerrilla-Gardening-Austin

"The glory of gardening: hands in the dirt, head in the sun, heart with nature. To nurture a garden is to feed not just the body, but the soul." 

- Alfred Austin

Votive Photography