The Gardener Within

There are literally hundreds of years of Midwest farmer’s blood coursing through my veins. My Grandpa was a farmer, his father was a farmer and my uncle still farms the family acreage. My Mom, while not a farmer by profession, has inherited a green thumb, with the ability to effortlessly grow anything. I, on the other hand, somehow inherited ZERO horticultural skills.

What’s the opposite of a green thumb? Because I’m pretty sure that’s what I have, but not for lack of trying. Before the age of the internet, keeping plants alive was nearly impossible. But now, you can google ‘why are my leaves yellow’ and find out exactly how to problem solve. Unfortunately for me, knowing the answer and keeping a plant from dying are two completely separate things.

But I’ve found a renewed sense of trying, thanks to a school project my daughter was assigned last year. I owe a huge thank you to her teacher for introducing composting to our lives. The simple lesson of mixing kitchen scraps, yard clippings and water has unleashed a farming beast. It was a ‘wow’ moment to realize how much food waste my family was producing. From kitchen scraps to past-their-prime produce – all those items now go in compost instead of the trash and with very little effort, come out as beautiful, nutrient-rich soil.

The snowball effect was immediate. The natural progression from composting, is, of course, gardening. You’re not just making all this glorious soil for nothing … you MUST use it for good! Which has led me to one of my 2020 resolutions: growing more of my own food. I know what you’re thinking – she can’t even keep houseplants alive; how is she going to manage a garden? The internet is a great resource, my friend, and I have spent countless hours doing my due diligence.

I scoured seed catalogs, looked up gardening tips and best practices, joined as many Facebook gardener’s groups as would allow me, and set out to redeem my farmer’s blood.

I started early with snow sewing, because it looked like a fun project my kids could help me with. The idea is to make a self-sufficient greenhouse out of a gallon milk jug. After months and months of patiently waiting, we have seedlings! I can’t wait to transfer them and watch my garden grow this summer.

To be continued…

About Cathy Summers

Cathy Summers is the Midday Host on 99.9 The Q and Afternoon Host on Cape Country 104.
737 West Main Street
Hyannis, MA 02601
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