Simple Garden Plan

At the last minute today—right as we chose our golden marigolds for our front bed by the ginkgo tree—we decided we do, after all, want a vegetable garden. I had wanted only a miniature pumpkin patch, but I knew I could spit our little plot in half and plant a row of vegetables. We chose just four little plants. We chose a beefsteak tomato, a Roma, a snacking pepper, and a red pepper. In the patio pots, we have three kinds of basil, dill, and chives. We have a fig and a lemon tree we grew from a seed.

I kept it more simple this year. No Serrano peppers. No ground cherries. No cherry tomatoes.

As it turns out, it’s good for your mental health to watch things grow and tend to plants. This work actually has an official name with research behind it: horticulture therapy.

(And if you’re on a tight budget, remember you can buy seed packs for a dollar and plant seeds indoors a few weeks before your growing season starts. In Pennsylvania, most gardeners plant their garden this last week of May, so you want to start your indoor seeds in April.)

Besides the veggies, the garden features things I never have to plant or pay anything to keep: goatsbeard, a lilac tree, a dogwood tree, a peach tree, two plum trees, peony, fern, a winterberry bush, a blackberry patch, and raspberries. Everything was either here when we moved in, or I grew it from seed.

I don’t have pictures today (but I will!).

I like checking on things and watering the garden each morning. I like refilling the birdbath and seeing the happy robins and finches splash to their heart’s content. I like glancing at the hummingbird feeder to see a hummingbird.

If you want to practice some horticulture therapy, grab some pots or find a sunny patch outside, plant something, and enjoy!

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