It’s a well known fact that avid hammockers like ENOpians, care about the environment and therefore like to get their hands dirty in it. Gardening can be some of the most rewarding and educational past times in the warm months. And I’m happy to say that these times are upon us! Whether you’re an experienced gardener or just starting out, it’s something everyone should consider trying their hand at. Depending on your local climate, this is about the time to get serious about putting some plants in the ground. Maybe you’ll even grow some trees to hammock on?
1. Prep Your Soil
The first step to having a beautiful and bountiful garden this season is to prepare your soil. And this should be done as soon as possible. Remove rocks, till the soil, and add some compost. Be sure that the soil is not too moist, the excess water in the beginning can stunt plant growth.
2. Weeding is a Must
So…did you keep up your weeding duties over the long winter? Probably not…so get to it. Whether you want to knock it out all in one go or keep at it a little at a time. Either way, get it done.
3. Plants Like Coffee Too
Coffee grounds are a great way to give plants an early boost, save some money, and reuse. Coffee grounds are nitrogen rich. The mineral nitrogen stimulates plant and vegetable growth. So drink up and then toss them into your compost or plop them right on top of the soil.
4. Reuse Cooking Water
When you’re done cooking spaghetti or boiling some veggies, let the water cool and use it to hydrate your plants. Not only are you reusing a precious natural resource, but the vitamins and minerals from the food you’ve just cooked will nourish your plants.
5. Chamomile Tea Please
This is especially a good tip if you are planting from seedlings. Make some chamomile tea, let it cool, and spray your young garden with it a few times a week. Chamomile tea is a great all-natural way to prevent bacterial and fungal infections–which are prone to happen with the moisture of Spring climates.
6. Crack an Egg
Now if you’re already composting your eggs than you’re probably okay on this one. Nevertheless, crushing up egg shells and burying them with your seedlings in the beginning will aid in healthy calcium levels. This will prevent a condition called “blossom end rot,” when fruiting vegetables suffer from sunken in lesions, often rotting out the whole fruit.
7. Be an Odd Ball
Now this is an aesthetic tip, but hey you want your garden to look good too! Plant your flowers and vegetables in odd numbers. As they blossom and fruit the visual of these plants willl appear more balanced, bigger, and healthier.
8. Sync with the Moon
Consider taking a tip from old-school farmers and from new-school biodynamic farmers; plan your gardening schedule with the cycles of the moon. There are many awesome mystical reasons as to why this is a good idea, but basically it stems from the belief that the moon governs moisture. An evening moonrise indicating fair weather for example.
9. Night Owl Much?
Speaking of the moon…the hardcore gardening enthusiasts agree that working at night will accelerate the growth of your plants. Just make sure you have the proper lighting so you don’t wake up the next morning and regret your decision.