To garden or not to garden?

Garden!

Way to give away the answer, Marian.  Geez.

Despite a borderline successful bounty from last year’s garden, I’m still an optimist when it comes to my gardening skills.  I have learned that it is important for me to manage expectations.  Aim low.  While this shouldn’t apply to ALL areas of life, it’s useful in the gardening arena.  Last year was my first year with a “big kid” garden (read more about that here and here) and all I aimed for was to eat something from the garden.  I might have dreamed of canning tomatoes, but I didn’t expect it and therefore wasn’t disappointed when it didn’t happen.

But boy did we eat from the garden!

kale, garden, for the love of food, organic

lettuce, for the love of food, organic, garden

organic tomatoes, for the love of food, garden

Clearly I will be planting kale, lettuce, and tomatoes again!  My squash, popcorn, herbs, and random beets and fennel didn’t do so well last year.  I’ll give the popcorn and squash another try now that I have better soil in the second bed.  The sweet peppers did ok, and we’ll plant them again this year.  Hopefully the strawberry plants we put in last year will be ready to bear fruit this year.  I’d LOVE to enjoy some fresh picked strawberries from the garden this year!

What about you?  Did you have success last year?  What are your must-plants?  What do you avoid?  Help a novice gardener out, especially in you are in the midwest region!

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