Finding the time and energy to garden has been a challenge for me in the past few years. Our property seems to be getting bigger or am I getting older? Regardless of the reason, I’m not willing to give up the great exercise and satisfaction I get from planting my garden, so I need to get more organized to get it done. I also have to be satisfied with an hour or two here and there instead of a full day of gardening. After I planted my garden last year, I took pictures of the planters and the gardens and made a list of the plants I bought at the local nurseries.
Our garden shed was built on top of an old outhouse and frankly it could withstand a hurricane. It has a waist high counter and wooden shelving. We used leftover linoleum flooring from the kitchen for the floor. It’s just the right size to hold the following:
- gardening gloves and ball caps in a closed plastic container
- small gardening tools-store in plastic carrier or basket with a handle
- gardening planters
- folding lawn furniture stored under the counter
- gazing ball and stone statues for the garden
- rod iron poles for hanging baskets, plant and tomato stakes, and long tools (small shovel, rake, edger)-stored in 5 gallon plastic bucket with metal part up
- items to decorate my screened-in porch
- flower seeds and bulbs in a metal container
- leftover potting soil in 5 gallon plastic bucket with a lid
In the spring:
- Use 5 gallon plastic bucket with handle to pull out weeds.
- Pull everything out of the shed and sweep it out (mice and chipmunks have made their winter homes in my shed).
- Take plants out of the garden that died over the winter.
- Throw out older seeds and bulbs that didn’t make the winter.
- Divide perennial plants if too big and share with your neighbors or replant in other parts of your garden to save money.
- Move other plants around to fill in where plants died or didn’t come up.
- Using pictures from last year, I bought plants and vegetables and planted the planters and the gardens.
In the fall after the first killing frost:
- Fall is for planting, so buy perennials on sale and fill in where plants didn’t live.
- Don’t forget to call 811 before you dig too deep to prevent damage to electric lines and natural gas pipelines.
- Wash out the planters and store in shed.
- Store leftover seeds and bulbs in metal containers
- Donate any ceramic planters or recycle plastic containers you didn’t use
After plants have been hit by frost, I like to fill in with fall décor so it doesn’t look so empty. I use some of the more colorful pots I emptied to hold mums and fill in with straw bales, pumpkins, cornstalks and gourds. Organize your gardening so it’s a pleasure, not a chore.
- Don’t store 9 volt batteries against each other or other batteries. They can spark and cause a fire.
- When you clear the clutter in medicine cabinets donate unused and unexpired medical supplies, to C.U.R.E., c/o Mission Central, 5 Pleasant View Drive, Mechanicsburg, PA 17050.
- Latex paint disposal: equal parts kitty litter and latex paint. Let sit for one hour and throw in garbage.
- Make the switch to permanent water bottles instead of putting plastic into our oceans. Even recycling plastic bottles produces toxins.