I was thinking the other night about how far we’ve come since our first mini farm garden experience. As I reminisced, I realized that it all stared with a sprained ankle. My ankle. Ouch.
We’ve always love the outdoors. But let me tell you neither of us ever had the intention of gardening with edibles… or mini-farming… or vermiculture and compost piles. You get the idea. We had hoped to have land someday, but more for the sake of having events and our future kid’s friends over to play. We assumed that it would be nothing more than grass and more grass that we’d have to mow.
Maybe a pool.
Maybe a trampoline.
But that was about it.
Did I mention grass?
But then one night at midnight I sprained my ankle. It was brutally painful and hysterical how it all went down. Let me set the scene:
I was coming home at midnight from my job about an hour away. There were loads of groceries to take into the house and hubby was already in bed. Having taken a NyQuil, he was zonked out and stuffed up from a bad cold.
We lived in a very safe neighborhood, but something that night spooked me. I woke him us and asked him to watch out the window while I made several trips back and forth to the car. On one of those trips, a balloon from a previous event flew out the front door. I was being silly and ran after it, jumping in the air to grab it and landed with my foot partially off the side walk and then I felt the pain.
Oh the pain.
It instantly puffed up like a soaked sponge, from my foot all the way up the outer side of my calf, and there I was on the lawn, yelling for help. I couldn’t roll over onto my knee, because I had banged it up on the way down as well. It too was swollen and a bit bloody. Hubby finally came stumbling out, groggy eyed and in his boxers to carry me in. Have mercy, what a sight we must have been!
And yes, I caught the balloon. In the confusion of it all I was still holding onto it as I yelped in pain. Hubby ripped it out of my hands when it got all tangled up in his arms as he carried me in.
He was sleepy.
And in his boxers.
So I forgave him.
Are you still with me? I’m getting to the gardening part.
So there I was laid up in bed for several days. I am a wimp that doesn’t like to be hurt but also have a high pain tolerance and let me tell you… I was hurtin’. So to get my mind off the pain I turned my attention to youtube. Specifically to videos on how to improve our lackluster landscape. Summer was coming. Our outdoor space was tidy and all. But not pretty.
And that’s when I found Rosalind Creasy. And the skies parted. Little cherubs sang. And I devoured every video and article I could find on her amazing concept of edible landscaping.
Her concept works for any size space, but we were really working with little corners and lots of grass.
Enter Mel Bartholomew and Square Foot Gardening. And then Rainbow Gardens (Donna’s Square Foot Garden back in the day.) And once again, the skies parted. Cherubs sang. And all that was left to do was convince my hubby that edibles were indeed feasible and beautiful in a landscape.
He took pity on me and my ginormous, purple ankle/foot/calf and wheeled me off to the local nursery in a borrowed wheel chair. (Because my armpits are so weak they bruise with crutches. Pitiful, I know.)
There I saw a purple and cheddar cauliflower for the first time. An electric green Romanesco. All three came home with me. And a random tomato plant.
And with those 4 plants, we were hooked. We binge watched Donna’s garden videos and read everything about Mel and Rosalind. Then we connected with friends who were front yard gardening and the rest is history.
For 12 years the plan was to have land… but God had better plans. Bigger plans. God sized plans. And I’m thankful for that.
I still can’t believe that we live where we do. It still feels like a surreal gift 3 years later.
And to think this amazing place would have been all grass… had it not been for that sprained ankle.
Unless otherwise noted, all photos are taken by yours truly and are exclusive content of this blog.