Urban Gardening

It is that time of year, I dig through the back of the printer cabinet to unearth the packets of seeds that I start now. There is something so mystical and magical about starting a garden from seed. I understand that story of Jack and the Beanstalk so much more now. Seeds are all magic seeds. These tiny specks grow into plants that each make all kinds of food come summer. Each seed becomes a plant. When you have a tiny envelope with a dozen or more tiny specks it is pretty wild to see a row of plants later in the summer knowing you held them in a tiny spot in the palm of your hand that spring.

Watering plants in the raised bed.

Buying Seeds

Buying seeds can get a little complicated, because after a few tries (or maybe on the 1st try) you start to care where the seeds come from. When you start out, you might want to keep it simple and then just get any seeds you like. If you have the time and energy though, it is worth seeking out seeds that are not part of the Monsanto gang. You can order online from these companies on the safe seed list. To find out more about what all this means, head over to Small Footprint Family for the details.

Once you have your seeds, you will need some potting soil, small containers and a shelf or structure to put your seeds on as they grow. You will also want a watering can, but a pitcher or water bottle will do. You can get as fancy or basic as you like here.

Sunlight and Warmth

A couple years ago I purchased a small plastic covered “greenhouse” shelf and it has worked out really well. I start with it inside and then as the weather warms up I put it outside with the cover on. Once the weather really heats up, then I take off the cover until I’m ready to plant the seedlings in the raised beds which are on our driveway.

This year I found this fabulous shelf (at Home Goods in Brighton – they had 2 more I think). I am going to start my seeds on it indoors with a few pots and small mason jars too. I’m always searching for the perfect reusable vessel for starting seeds.

The shelf that I use outside is this one. It is from Wayfair (I work with Wayfair but this is not sponsored in any way by Wayfair. They just happen to have the best price for the item. )

Now all you have to do is figure out what to grow. I don’t have the best green thumb so not everything worked for me, but I have had a thriving urban garden for over 5 years now. I get the kids involved as well. They were eager when they were little to play in the mud. They still enjoy it as tweens it just takes a little more prodding (threatening to take away screens) to get them out there, but in the end they enjoyment is the same.

What to Plant

I always grow some herbs, cherry tomatoes, broccoli, cucumbers, beans and peas. Last year I wanted to do some cutting flowers for summer bouquets but they didn’t do so well (okay I neglected them). I’ll try again this year. What do you want to grow in your garden?

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