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Farm Your Yard: Lessons learned by the Director of Columbia Center for Urban Agriculture

Thursday, March 9, 2017 7:30
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Carrie Hargrove shares her hard-earned wisdom about starting a garden. Farm Your yard is a regular segment on KBIA’s Thinking out Loud.

Carrie Hargrove: Something else that was hard for me to deal with in my early days of gardening was this concept of patience. I was really hard for me to accept that you can plant a seed in the ground, and it could take a week or more for anything visible to happen.

By Trevor Harris
Mar 2, 2017


The big reason I was intimidated was because reading all of those gardening books did clarify some things for me, but really was just too much information for me to absorb which led to the unfortunate outcome of me becoming possibly even more confused than I was before. The problem, which I only understand now in hindsight, is that I was making it too big in my head. I should have just dove in and been open to any mistakes that I was bound to make and learn from them.

At the time, though, I was more interested in knowing everything I needed to know before I even started gardening, to minimize the chance of failure. Fast forward 10 years, and if there is one thing I have learned about gardening it is that it teaches you to get right back on the horse every time you fall. Let’s face it, failure to some extent is inherent in gardening. No year provides the perfect environmental conditions for every plant you want to grow in your garden.

And that’s the thing, sometimes failure is out of your immediate control, like the incredibly wet summer we had in 2015 that straight up killed all of my heirloom tomato plants in early August. I got only a few Brandywines that year. Coming to terms with the fact that our best laid plans as gardeners might not work splendidly depending on what mother nature throws at us is a humbling concept that teaches you to stay on your toes and to not dwell on mistakes or failures.

Read the complete article here.

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