Written by - Kaitlynn from MIgardener
Gardening is contagious. Some people are born into it, but (now more than ever in the MIgardener community), most people have a love of gardening thrust upon them. For someone passionate about their plants, there is nothing better than hearing someone say, "I could never do that" as a challenge to convert them. I've been looking forward to finding creative ways to invite my non-green-thumbed friends into the world of gardening in 2020. For those of us who have grown up around it, the things mentioned on my list might be intuitive. However, for someone with 0 gardening background, these four simple acts can be eye-opening and life-changing. Name a better set of experiences to carry into the new year.
Here are a handful of ways to share your love for gardening in 2020:
1. Plant something to share it.
Our garden didn't work very well when I was growing up. My parents couldn't find the energy to raise five children and successfully garden at the same time. Sorry, mom. It just wasn't our thing at the time. So, our primary source of homegrown food became our lovely neighbors. We'll call them Hank and Pam. There was nothing better than opening the front door to Hank as he offered us handfuls of overflow from his garden all season long. His generosity was always welcome. With a family of seven, the extra fruits and veggies rarely went to waste. Varieties like beans, radishes, summer squash, and leafy lettuce are the best things to plant if you're hoping to share them! Alternatively, strike up a conversation with your neighbor about what their favorite veggies are and give them as a gift during the harvest season. Once they taste the difference, it'll be hard for them to return to store-bought produce.
2. Plan a Garden Field Trip!
We all need to get away every once in a while. If you and your friends are looking for a more hands-off type of day trip, time spent exploring a local botanical garden or garden center is the way to go! A quick google search will help you find the loveliest gardens in your area, and almost every University campus has a space designated for one. One of my favorite spots in the world is the Anna Scripps Whitcomb Conservatory in Belle Isle, Detroit. Trips like this are equal parts relaxing and educational. Also, this is a subtle way to introduce your friends to the nerdier side of plant-loving. Discover botanical gardens and conservatories in your state by checking out this list.
3. Invite your friends to help. (At any level)
If you have a garden today, there was probably a point in your life where someone asked you to help with the weeding. Helping someone else's garden succeed is one of the first steps to feeling empowered to start your own. In my own little four by four raised bed and potted herb garden in 2019, it was so fun to share the workload with other friends of mine who had never gardened before. We call this the 'gardening bug.' Once you get it, it's nearly impossible not to think about it. Garden chores like weeding, pruning, and watering are perfect for beginners. Harvesting is also the best; nothing compares to the joy my friend felt when she got to help me harvest my rainbow carrots for the first time!
4. Host a Farm to Table Dinner Party
The second most enjoyable thing about gardening is the part where you get to turn the food you grew into the food you eat! How to host a farm to table dinner party? It's simple! Assign each of your friends a specific garden fresh variety and have them research new recipes. Have a day set aside to try the new recipes together, with the grand finale being a vast abundance of creative new dishes. (P.s. Take pictures of your party and tag MIgardener on Facebook and Instagram.) If a full farm to table blog post is something you'd be interested in reading, leave a comment on Facebook for us!
I hope this post inspires you to share your love for gardening with others in the new year. Sometimes the small things are what can make the biggest difference in someone's day. Sharing the things you love with others can be as simple as posting it on Instagram. It becomes a hundred times more special when you share those moments with the people you come in contact with every day.
Main Sources: linked throughout the post