I was still eating a lot of junk when I started down my path of “heathy eating.” My meals consisted of a lot of processed products and while I was loosing weight, it was too much in the ways of counting calories and becoming obsessive (you can read that story here). Eventually I fell in love with unprocessed, from the earth kinds of things. I joined a CSA, started going to the farmers’ market, kept a supply of staples on hand, and really learned where my food came from.
It’s been a long (extremely long) journey but what I’ve realized that the only reason I’m on this path is because I chose to start small. I made the steps to change my fast food loving ways. Too often lofty goals get in the way of progress and success falls short because the bar was set too high. Start small and build into big change.
In a similar vein, I’ve always dreamed of having a garden. While I’m still a long way out on that dream, I wanted to do something small this summer. In the houses I’ve been in before, I’ve done small herb pots that I usually forgot about after a month. I decided this time do start thinking about my space in a unique way. We have no backyard, just a deck and some ground covered by mulch, so I couldn’t do anything elaborate.
I scoured the internet for ideas and decided to start out with two long boxes. Never one to pass up a challenge, I sketched out an idea to build these boxes and total cost came in barely over $60 for two boxes that are 3 feet long but 1 1/2 feet tall and 1 foot deep. I’m experimenting with herbs and a couple plants to see what I can grow (I also think I didn’t need to build them this high, but they look nice!) My goal is to build more planters where I can plant lettuce, spinach, and maybe even some vine plants (I saw an awesome idea for growing plants up instead of out!)
I’m not a gardener (I’ve killed my fair share of plants) but I’ve decided to start small. An herb garden is a great way to do this while giving you a great supply of flavor to work with and can easily be planted in pots for those who don’t have yards!
I’ve got big ideas but I’m starting small because every step counts.
(For those curious, I built these two boxes using eight 1x6x6 for the sides, two 2x2x8 for the corners, one 1x12x6 as the base and a many screws and wood glue. I put a weed blocker tarp to keep the dirt in and used a redwood stain to finish. Each box holds a couple large bags of soil. In my trial box I have: poblano pepper (will be transplanted), parsley, cherry tomato (will be transplanted), and oregano while in the other box I planted thyme, dill, sage, and rosemary. I have a separate planter for basil and a separate planter for cilantro- it doesn’t work well with a couple of the other herbs- yay for learning about companion planting! My ultimate goal is to have three tiers: bottom tier: herbs, middle tier: non-vine plants, top tier: vine plants with a support backing.)