This winter means another season of icy pavement and frozen soil. It means another season you’ll be trapped inside the house, longingly staring out your frosted windows. Aching for the spring sunshine, you’ll utter a familiar promise to yourself: “I won’t fail to take advantage of the weather when summer is here.” These promises often fall empty when summer arrives again and we just can’t find a reason to get ourselves outside. What’s the perfect motivation plan? Start a summer garden. (That means planning now!) Below are five reasons you can’t say no.
1. Perfect Summer Project
Setting short and long-term goals is the hidden key to success. Investing time into small projects helps us to organize our time effectively and feel accomplished when we’ve completed a project we set out to do. Building a garden can give you a perfect project for the spring or summer time. When spring rolls around, we tend to find ourselves looking at the season as a fresh start. We take to our homes with mops and buckets, throw out or donate garbage bags of clothes we’ve been hoarding all winter, and look for ways to start the season anew. A great way to do this is to invest a little bit of time into a garden.
Maybe you don’t think you’ll have time for such an undertaking? There’s always the option of gardening on a smaller scale. Invest in a small pot or tray for your windowsill, or get crafty and make your own to grow your favorite fresh herbs. Big or small, getting your gardening project off the ground can give you a positive start to summer!
If you’re stubborn about starting a vegetable garden, maybe a flower garden is the right choice for you. Planting a flowerbed is a real opportunity to be creative. Arranging and visualizing your plants based on their height, color, and texture is a fun, artsy endeavor. If you decide to brighten up your yard with a flower patch, grab a friend and head to an agricultural area nearby. Greenhouses in the area will have lots to offer and the employees are usually extremely knowledgeable and helpful. By visiting local greenhouse flower vendors you may encounter some of the most beautiful and unorthodox types of flowers. Not only does a flowerbed brighten up your yard, but clipping your flowers every now and then will allow you free home décor as well. Spruce up the kitchen with a vase of tiger lilies or soften the bedroom with a glass bursting with white hydrangeas.
If you’re still not convinced you have the time or the motivation to dedicate yourself to a garden, why not invest in a lilac tree? This lovely plant will bloom once a year and provide you with an abundant amount of clippings to brighten up your home with soft shades of lilac.
3. Down Time
A garden is not only a great short-term goal, but it can provide you with some much-needed peace and quiet. Between milking the goats, constructing a new pen, and homeschooling your kids (or whatever else demands your attention), it’s hard to award yourself a little you time. A garden can be a fun and relaxing hobby that allows you to just stop thinking for a little while. Once you get the hang of it, gardening can become mindless work. It’s also a great motivation to get up off the couch and spend time outdoors. Motivated to get outside to water your garden, you’ll be more likely to stay outside and enjoy the summer weather.
After a morning of hard work in the garden, there’s nothing more rewarding than stirring up a cocktail and lounging by your beautiful garden.
4. Fresh Fruit and Vegetables at No Cost
This one is the most obvious reason to start a vegetable garden—to have your own fruit and vegetables on hand! The time you invest will pay its dues when you stop making trips to the grocery store and start making trips to the backyard vegetable garden instead! For less than twenty dollars you can invest in a wide array of fruit and vegetable seeds that will flourish all summer long. At the end of the season when winter rolls around again, you won’t have any fear of having taken this gorgeous season for granted.
5. Expand Your Skill Horizons
When is the last time you really learned how to do something new? Gardening is an ongoing learning experience, no matter how many years you have under your belt. It’s a great skill set to acquire, and the more you think about it, the more sense it makes that we should know how to grow our own food and be self-sustainable. Having the ability to care for plants will open up new opportunities that you didn’t know even existed. You can build friendships with other local gardeners and share tips. Growing a vegetable garden also discreetly hones your cooking and baking skills. With a garden full of vegetables, you’ll be looking for different ways you can incorporate these into meals. Gardening may even lead to financial opportunities you’ve never thought of before, like tending to gardens while friends take a vacation or entering local gardening competitions.
There are countless reasons one should start a garden, and once you experience the payoff from your garden, you won’t know how you ever lived without it. There are many ways a garden can fit itself into your life, so don’t write off the idea due to lack of time or space. Even a small pot of fresh herbs or flowers on the windowsill will offer a crisp reminder of the joy in the season.
©2012 Off the Grid News