Winter Gardening Fair

I love learning.

I just love it!

I mean, there's nothing that feels better (to me anyway) than acquiring something new - whether it be a skill, a useful tidbit of knowledge, or obtaining an achievement. The feeling is actually quite addicting.

I also love growing stuff. In a garden. Stuff that we can eat.

And on Saturday I combined those two when John and I attended the Winter Gardening Fair at a local community college. We woke up early at headed to 'school' where we attended sessions on:

  • Enticing wildlife into your backyard (for things like pollination purposes, not to dig through your trash can)
  • Raised Bed Gardening (and square foot gardening) **our favorite!**
  • Organic and Companion Gardening
  • Planting, Growing, Harvesting and Preserving Small Fruits
  • Edible Landscape, Local Foods, Green Roofs 

Basically, I came away with five points that I find important to share with all of my gardening, learnin' obsessed buddies:

  1. Make your own dang soil for raised beds! (Use 1 part compost, 1 part sand, and 1 part soil. And dirt is the crap you get out of your vacuum bin, soil is rich and black and smells earthy.)
  2. Do some reading up on companion planting to get your veggies working together in the garden. 
  3. Grow food wherever you can. Incorporate it into your landscape. It doesn't have to look nasty as long as you get creative with how you arrange your produce. 
  4. Start small and make your projects managable. John and I will not be able to implement all of our ideas into our garden and lot this summer. Let's be real here, we will probably invest a few years before we get our lot to look (and crank out produce) like we wish. 
  5. Get as much as you can for free. Get free compost from your city landfill (if they have a compost area), look on Craigslist or for supplies you can haul away, and get creative and use materials you have at home. It just takes a little ingenuity and a fresh perspective to make something usable for your garden. 
  6. BONUS: Glean as much information from elderly neighbors, family members, or friends as possible. One of our session speakers was an 87-year-old woman who had seen (and experienced!) it all. We learned so much from her, and left with pages full of notes that couldn't have been collected anywhere else. We were truly lucky to learn from her on Saturday!

What should you deduce from this post?

Go learn something.

And plant something.

Or learn something about planting something.

That is all.

**I'll post some of the resources we gathered from the Winter Gardening Fair soon**

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