Ah, to this day I still remember my first gardening experience. It wassuch a disaster that I didnt think I would ever want to garden again. Ialmost decided to turn my casual hobby into the most rage-inducing topicyou could possibly bring up to me.It all started a few weeks after I moved in to my first house. I wasexcited just to have my own grass to mow, since I had been in apartmentsand condos for quite a while. In between plans to paint walls and renovatethe inside to exactly how I like, I thought it would be a good idea tostart a fruit garden so that I could have some fresh produce and put myyard to use.
At that point I didnt really know anything at all aboutgardening. But still in my spunky youthful years, I decided I didnt needhelp. How hard could it be to start a garden and grow stuff? After all, ithappens in nature all the time and nobody even has to do anything.I already had a grassless patch in my yard where it looked like theprevious owner had attempted a garden. But any attempt they had madeturned out to be an utter travesty.
The area was full of rocks and weeds,with no signs of any agreeable plants. I spent several hours of workspread over several days to clear out the entire area, leaving nothing butdirt. At that point, however, I didnt realize the difference betweendirt and soil. I was dealing with barren, hard, nutritionless, andunforgiving land.I made some attempt at making my garden look nice; although I think evenMartha Stewart would have had difficulties. I took some stained boardsthat were sitting in my basement (quite convenient, no?) and used them asa border for my garden, to keep out all the pests that couldnt jump morethan a foot (I figured I would be safe from lawn gnomes). I used the pileof rocks I had collected from the garden to make a creepy shrine lookingthing in front of it. I dont know what I was thinking when I did that.I went to the store that very day, and picked out whatever looked tasty.Strawberries? Sure! Watermelon? Yeah! I hacked away a hole in therock-hard ground and poked the seed in.
After that, I think I watered itfaithfully every day for several weeks before realizing that it was notgoing to grow anything. But even after I had that realization, I continuedto water in hopes that my seeds would pull a last minute sprout on me. ButI knew there was no hope, and I was heartbroken. After all those hours ofpulling up weeds and tossing rocks into a pile, I had no fruit to show formy labor.So, feeling dejected and betrayed, I logged onto the internet and searchedfor a guide to gardening. I quickly ran across a site that led me torealize the true skill required for gardening. It was then I learned aboutsoil consistency, nutrients, ideal watering conditions, seasons, and allthose things. After I read up on my area and how to grow fruits, I learnedexactly what to do. I learned how to get the ideal soil, when to plant theseeds, how much to water, etc. Just a night of browsing the internet andprinting off sources, and I was totally ready for the next planting season.
If youre in the position I was, and youre just itching to start a newgarden I urge you to learn from my mistake. Make sure you do plenty ofproper research on the types of plants youre trying to grow, along withthe climate. Spend money on good soil, good fertilizer, and good gardentools. Hopefully you dont have to go through the emotional disaster thatI went through.
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