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It’s National Gardening Month: Go Plant Something!

  • a Care2 favorite by Judi Gerber
It’s National Gardening Month: Go Plant Something!

Not only does April honor Earth Day but also growing plants — that’s right, April is National Garden Month. Each year, the National Gardening Association (NGA) sponsors National Garden Month to encourage individuals to get outside and grow plants. If you have been thinking about gardening, this is a great time to go ahead and take the plunge. And for those who are getting a slow start this year, find some inspiration and get back out there.

There are so many reasons that people garden. Some do it because they love fresh floral bouquets –and in spite of the high prices we pay to buy flowers, they are relatively simple to grow.

For those who just arenít sure where to start and need some ideas and inspiration, as the weather keeps getting warmer, you can find inspiration by visiting local botanic gardens. You might want to consider becoming a member of your local garden, because they can provide you with resources all year long. Most offer seasonal garden classes, year-round programs, plant sales, and local garden clubs that focus on almost every kind of plant or flower that you can think of.

Other people exclusively grow†edible plants,†so that they can ensure they are getting organically grown produce, and because they want to know exactly what goes into their food.

If you have wanted to try growing your own food but are feeling overwhelmed and arenít sure where to begin, start small. Donít think that you need to plant the entire area that you have available. Start by growing some of your favorite, easy-to-grow vegetables and herbs.

My biggest piece of advice for new edible gardeners is to grow what you like and grow only what you will eat. It sounds so simple, but many new gardeners get so wrapped up in the idea of growing all of their own food and see this as the time to try eating new things, that they forget about what it might take to grow those things. Once you get comfortable growing produce, then you can gradually keep incorporating more and more as you progress.

Regardless of whether you grow beautiful flowers or fresh food, there are plenty of other benefits; I garden because it gets me out of the office, away from my computer, and into the fresh air. And it also gives me exercise!

As I wrote about a couple of weeks ago, I have learned so much from my garden, and not all of it is related to horticulture but also the rest of my life.† These lessons have been the biggest, unexpected gift I have received from gardening, and I look forward each season to learning more of them.

Related:
7 Reasons to Grow Your Own Food
Fool-Proof Tips for Container Gardening

Read more: Food, Green, Lawns & Gardens, Nature, Nature & Wildlife,

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Judi Gerber

Judi Gerber is a University of California Master Gardener with a certificate in Horticultural Therapy. She writes about sustainable farming, local foods, and organic gardening for multiple magazines. Her book Farming in Torrance and the South Bay was released in September 2008.

91 comments

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7:38PM PDT on May 9, 2013

I have been planting for the last month or more

5:16PM PDT on May 7, 2013

Thanks.

2:35AM PDT on May 7, 2013

Thanks

2:22PM PDT on May 3, 2013

I enjoy planting new things, I touch plants every day - even if it's just house pot plants. This makes me feel good!

11:00PM PDT on Apr 29, 2013

We plan on growing scarlet runner beans they bloom red flowers and have edible beans on them and they attract hummingbirds! Put them in a pot and let them grow! A pretty plant!

8:57PM PDT on Apr 26, 2013

Yes, it is time to start as snow has almost melted!

11:23AM PDT on Apr 25, 2013

started my vegetable garden late last month but will start planting flower this weekend

8:08AM PDT on Apr 25, 2013

Been setting up our greenhouse, got a ton of seeds going, and in the compost I found a surprise of at least 50 spaghetti squash seedlings! Excited about this year.

7:10AM PDT on Apr 25, 2013

We garden BIg around here. Much more than we can use. Lots to share. :)

10:43PM PDT on Apr 24, 2013

lavendar and sage and some cala lily. There's strawberry and zucchinni to ohhh feels so good to get my hands in the dirt and say thank you Mother Earth

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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