This year, I’m finally in a house with a manageable yard, feeling good about things, having enough time, with a promise to take care of the yardwork because my fiance takes care of the mowing. And I’ve decided to start a garden. I’ve grown tomatoes on my apartment balcony (and then again in my house when I was too unhappy to care about them, and then again in this house when it was too late in the year and I was too occupied with fixing up the indoors and having just moved in with someone for the first time ever to properly care for the outside), but aside from helping my parents with their vegetable garden when I was young, I’ve never done my own gardening. But I’m reading up, and asking questions, and hoping to learn as I go.

Current status: I live in Toledo, OH, zone 5b. I have a nice house with a space behind the garage approximately the size of the garage, with a raised bed from the previous owner in the middle of it. Sadly, since I moved in late and didn’t care for the outdoors until fall, there was a jungle of weeds growing there, and I’m sure their babies await me this spring. I’ve started Striped Toga eggplant, Brandywine tomatoes, Taxi tomatoes, Genovese basil, globe basil (with an Italian name I can never remember), oregano, marigolds, and tomato and pepper seeds saved from last year indoors. Right now everything has sprouted at least a couple of seedlings except for the heirloom tomatoes and the globe basil, but now–as opposed to a few days ago when everything was still damp, bare potting soil–I have full confidence they will sprout. Mostly full. We’ll see how it goes. And outdoors, I’ve planted lettuce and spinach, four raspberry canes, and two blueberry bushes (in pots, with sulfur to acidify the soil–see, I’m learning!) in the garden, and a couple of bulbs in the side yard. I have plans for more. Much more.

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