Kasey – Week 2

My dog watches me plant the first tomato plant.

With the planters prepared, it is time to plant. It is daunting and exciting all at once to decide on what I want to grow. Since I have limited space available and I am a beginner, I decided to go with the basics. I know that tomatoes are the “go to” crop of the backyard gardener, so I bought some heirloom tomato seedlings from my local nursery. My plan was to pick other crops to complement all of the tomatoes. Caprese is by far my favorite use of a tomato, so I decided to plant a small pot of basil. Fortunately, I found an herb kit that offered parsley and cilantro. The addition of cilantro and the protests of my husband led me to another use—salsa! I went on a pepper-buying spree and bought habanero, jalepeño, serrano, and cayenne. I heard that they do well in hot weather, so I hoped that the climate here in Austin would yield a bushel of spicy deliciousness. Of course, these choices w ere la rgely based on what was in season in late March. Finding this information was as simple as using the Internet and talking to the people at my nursery.

Getting dirty.

(A note here about  getting involved with gardening, it’s addictive. Not even a week after I decided on what I would be growing, I found myself with mint, strawberries, and tons of flowers.)

Herbs just waiting to sprout.

After purchasing my plants, I was ready to plant! The soil had been prepared and fertilized, so I simply followed the directions on the tags on how to plant. Since I was working with containers, there was not as much space between plants as might have been recommended, but I elected

in the favor of quantity. I wasn’t sure I could keep my plants alive, so I thought it might be nice to raise the stakes that they would survive.

Two boxes were devoted to plants, and one to peppers of all types. Additionally, I had a pot with seeds for herbs, a pot with straw

berry roots, and two pots with mint plants. I learned (from nearly everyone I talked to) that tomato plants should be mostly buried when they are transplanted into their final plot. I dug a deep hole and stuffed my little plants down into it. The top few branches were just peaking out from the soil.

The peppers just needed their roots to be under the surface, so they were very easy to plant. By the time I was done, it looked like I had a real garden on my hands.

Finished garden with peppers on the right.

 

 

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adventures in urban gardening