It's been over 10 years since I've had the time, space and inclination to have a real garden, so it's been a lot of fun to plant one this year.

The main focus was having an outdoor project my daughter could have some ownership of, and so I gave myself permission to go the easy route where I could: raised beds instead of tilling, a seed starter kit and grow light instead of crafting a setup out of individual parts, rain and the occasional hose instead of a rain barrel, and just a few different crops to manage: tomatoes, broccoli, cilantro, basil, and lettuce.

Here's what it looked like when we'd just moved the seedlings outside:

I also accepted early on that we'd be paying a small tax to the local bunnies, squirrels and birds as a part of encroaching on their yard space, forgoing any fences or chemicals to keep them away. We did have fun making some tin foil "scarecrows" that wave in the wind, and they seem to be working pretty well.

Fresh pesto is one of my favorite foods, so having basil to pick is a joy. Our daughter loves garden tomatoes and has previously mostly relied on the farmers market and the kindness of neighbors; it will be fun to see her harvest snacks and take pride knowing she was the one to plant them in the first place.

4 thoughts on “This Year's Garden

  1. Lovely! Thank you. I appreciate your Dad & Daughter plan.
    I anticipate her big grin with "first bites."

  2. What are your thoughts about a motion-activated water sprinkler to scare-off bunnies, squirrels, chipmunks, ..., etc.? Couple that with a moisture sensor, and you may not have to do any manual watering.

    1. I seriously investigated how I could use my SmartThings setup at home to do this kind of thing, starting with a harmless critter deterrent in the form of motion-triggered lights and/or sound.

      But my daughter probably already has a warped sense of the role of home automation in the course of normal life, so I decided to let this be an automation-free zone.

  3. Lovely, Chris! A perfect project for you and A. I hope that the critters do not tax you at a high rate!

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