Time to get dirty!

Summer is literally around the corner and that means one thing to me…GARDEN TIME!! I’m a little bit of a nerd when it comes to the garden, I’m just a beginner in the world of green thumbs but I love it! This coming from the girl who is terrified of spiders and has a bit of a disgust for all things dirty, creepy, crawly, and stinky which is kinda what gardening is all about. During this time of year, I put on my big girl pants (as well as gloves and some uncared for old clothing items) and get digging.

I say I’m a beginner although I’ve been trying my hand at this gardening thing for over 15 years. As it goes, becoming an adult I moved every couple years…change in roommate, increased rents, addition of pets, addition of love, etc.  Despite my constant (well, near constant) efforts to make each spot a true home complete with a garden, learning a new location is a rather trying thing for a gardener. Just when you figure out the soil, and sunlight, tackle the relevant pests, and adjust the watering amounts to have a thriving garden, you move and get to start all over. It’s been disheartening in an area where every where you turn people have their own vegetable garden, green wall, and fruit trees to sustain themselves…I want in on that!!

I recently moved yet again, but this time it’s more of a forever home which meant I was adamant that there would be space to garden and grow my own flowers and food. We found a wonderful spot with a decent rooftop patio, small shaded garden below, and tons of opportunity for indoor gardening. And so it begins…again!

This year , with the excitement of knowing I can do what ever I want and try what ever I want, I did a few things to prepare for gardening. We eat a lot of eggs in our home, hard boiled, quiche, bacon pasta, the list goes on and on…I bet you can guess where this is going, we save our egg shells! Once cracked open and empty, I wash out each shell (I personally am not terribly thoughtful about this) and leave them to dry on paper towel. Once dried I pop them into a sealed container, I use a plastic one instead of a bag that will get cut by sharp edges of shells, and then take my steel coffee mug and crush the heck out of the shells. Side note- I do tend to save up the shells and pick an unusually stressful day to do the crushing, pretend I’m smashing away all the negative. My other go to and I’m sure this will not surprise any of you who have read any of my other posts is coffee!!! YAY! Once I’ve brewed that pot of coffee I save the grounds and left them dry out, a baking sheet works well for this as it speeds the process having a thin layer. Again, i prefer to store the dried grounds in a sealed container. Once it’s time to prep my soil and add my seedlings to the garden I take these two garden delights with me and add them to my soil. I use the coffee more sparingly as I’ve found some plants aren’t as keen to it. The egg shells are awesome for adding nutrients like calcium into the soil for your veggies but also does a super job keeping away things like snails and slugs when place around the base of your plants (saved my tomatoes one year).

I love knowing that I am giving my garden a free boost from things I would have just let the city compost. I’m always into the idea of using items to the point of exhaustion, if it can have another purpose, WHY NOT?

Tip of the Day: Another easy trick when prepping your garden is to insert small tubs of beers throughout your garden, it gets those slimy guys attention and steers slugs away from your newly planted little ones.

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