Yep, I have a garden right in my front yard. My husband says it looks like the Clampett’s live here, but I don’t care. It’s the only piece of our property that is not covered in shade. The herbs and veggies need love from the sun. And truly, I think the garden is beautiful. Here’s what it looked like when I first planted it –
I tried to lay it out in a pretty fan shape…in the hopes that this would make it prettier as my front yard landscaping. But let’s face it, a garden in your front yard will probably never be mistaken for “landscaping”. But the neighbors won’t mind when I show up with a basket of tomatoes for them! And honestly, you can’t see anything from the street, you actually have to pull into the drive to see the yard. Why am I justifying this? I like it, shouldn’t that be enough??? Okay, I’m a little embarrassed. But I’m not ashamed! I am very proud to be growing good nutritious food for my family. I can’t wait to can tomato sauce and peppers, so in January next year I can open up a jar of summer yumminess.
I also used the flower beds for a winter garden of lettuce and collards. They grew like gangbusters! Here’s the pretty lettuce that we’ve chopped down 3 times and it has grown back each time. This is an heirloom butter lettuce, it is delicious. Seriously, it’s been growing over and over since November. My mom and sister were here at Christmas and had a salad made from this lettuce, and here it is May and I STILL have lettuce growing!
And those collards, yum yum yum. For those of you that haven’t tried collards before, I have to admit that it is an acquired taste. But I’ll be posting how to cook them this week, and maybe you’ll get brave enough to try them sometime. I grew 3 plants and they each got huge and produced enough collards for 4 meals + a bunch to share with my neighbor.
Finally, my mom has bragged about my Basil growing skills. Somehow or another I end up with Basil Bushes! They get so fat and totally flooded with leaves. I really only have two tips… First, when you plant it, make sure you fertilize the plant up front and don’t water it every day. I water every 2 or 3 days.
And the second tip… see how I’m pinching the top 2 leaves in the above picture? I pinch those off on every stem once a week. This allows the stem to extend rather than the leaves growing out there. This results in a fatter basil plant. Just pinch of the 2 middle baby leaves, they’ll look like this –
I am by no means a master gardener, but it makes me really happy to play in the dirt. I hate weeding, but other than that gardening really is a wonderful way to enjoy the outdoors. Well…until we face 100 degree summer days in Georgia.