Monday, January 7, 2013

Gardening Resolutions for the New Year

Resolutions courtesy of the National Gardening Bureau

I don’t usually make New Year’s resolutions, but this year, I may be opening my garden to visitors for the very first time. Yikes! But as #3 and #4 of these gardening resolutions encourage, I’m going to try something new and share what I love about my garden. It’s far from perfect—and I hope that’s okay with anyone that comes to visit—and it’s far from finished, because what garden ever really is “done.” However, it provides joy and I’ve resolved that for me 2013 is all about creating joy and appreciating what I have and what’s in store.

1. I will not blame myself for gardening failures. Oftentimes, Mother Nature is not our friend when it comes to gardening. Or life gets in the way. We do not want you to despair! Simply try again and learn from experience. Your garden, and your gardening friends, are both extremely forgiving.

It may not be perfect, but there’s always something wonderful and special about being in a garden.

2. I will not be afraid to ask questions. How else can you learn? Take advantage of the experience of your neighbor, your aunt, the garden center employee or the local extension agent. If they are like typical garden fanatics, they will appreciate your interest and be flattered that you want to learn from them. And learn you will!

You can ask lots of questions at this year’s gardening shows, including the Yard, Garden & Patio Show (YGP) Joining the Hardy Plant Society of Oregon (HPSO) is a great way to connect with other gardeners, most of whom would love to share their enthusiasm with you.

3. I will try something new. This is kind of a no-brainer, right? Have you ever met a gardener who didn't want the newest of the new, for bragging rights if nothing else? But what about really a new growing style or completely new crop of vegetables. Cruise around on Pinterest and we guarantee you'll find something irresistible that's out of your usual comfort zone.

Gardening shows, including YGP seminars, HPSO programs and the many classes offered by local garden centers and specialty nurseries are also great ways to get new ideas.

4. I will share my passion. We've done and seen studies that show many of today's gardeners got their start by learning from someone else, usually a parent or grandparent. Can you be that mentor? Will you be the reason your son or daughter serves homegrown vegetables to your grandchildren? Can you be the reason your neighbor plants window boxes for the first time?

5. I will embrace nature and garden for the birds, the bees and the butterflies (and the bats too!). One of the most enjoyable benefits of having a garden is being able to enjoy the beautiful creatures who visit it. So plan your flowers and vegetables with that in mind then sit back and enjoy the show.

If you have a gardening resolution, please share it. Here’s to a new year of expressing ourselves in our gardens!


  1. We have a wedding in our yard August 17, 2013. My resolution (goal) is to have the perfect venue without stressing too much. I am also the Mother of the groom so it is doubly stressful.

    1. Treda,perfect in the eyes of Mother Nature and your guests may be very different than perfect to you. Hope you are able to find just the right balance so you can enjoy the time leading up to and the day of the joyous event!

  2. I made a whole list of resolutions - all just small changes - such as to dig up the "one-sies" or replicate them, and use a more creative mowing plan. Also, to stroll around the garden early and actually make a list of the things that I want to change...don't know if I'll get to all of them, but it's a start!

    1. Cate, I'm curious what a more creative mowing plan is. I like the idea about strolling the garden to identify what needs to get done...and to prioritize. I seem to have lots of things to do that require wheelbarrows full of compost, gravel and rock!