Thursday, January 13, 2011

Garden Journal 1/13/11: New Year's Gardening Resolutions

vintage metal garden buckets
Vintage metal buckets filled with garden plans, ideas, and dreams—and yesterday, lots of wonderful donkey manure for the compost pile.

Three or four years ago, I found myself wide awake with insomnia at 3:00am on January 1st, scribbling down a ridiculously long list of goals and plans for the new year. I don't think I looked at the list again until I found it months later in a pile of paperwork clutter, and naturally hardly anything on it had been accomplished. Talk about a downer.

It's good to have goals (and I've always been a list maker), but this year I'm keeping things straightforward and simple.

These are my garden related resolutions:
1. More gardening.
2. More garden blogging.
3. More compost making—or at least more some compost pile turning.
4. Keep my new beagle puppy out of my very unbeagleproof-fenced garden.
And last but not least, always on the list but rarely ever accomplished (some of you can guess what's coming here):
5. Keep better gardening records!

I think I can do it. Okay, maybe not the puppy part. But definitely everything else, especially since, for various reasons, I didn't do much of 1, 2, 3, and 5 in 2010. Here's to a bountiful new year!

So what are your gardening hopes, dreams, goals, and plans for 2011?

©, the dreaming and scheming foodie farm blog where my garden plans have a habit of growing out of control during the frozen and snowy days of winter. Yours, too?


  1. I made a resolution to start a gardening blog to keep track of my gardening goals and help me stay organized/keep better records. Then I realized it's the middle of winter and I have nothing to write about.

    So, now I'm just reading other people's gardening blogs and hoping for inspiration!

    Good luck with puppy-proofing. Beagles can be very determined!

  2. Keep it better organized! Keep up with the weeding and also the harvesting.

  3. I'm definitely there with you on keeping things better organized. I have decided to start keeping a garden journal this year and now I just need to figure out how I'd like to organize it. Yay for fresh starts and new years! :)

  4. Plant more of the things we love. Last year was the first year for new garden bed and it got all the seed I never managed to plant in prior years. The lettuce was good but too crowded. The Kohlrabi never got very big, the Brussels sprouts never did anything and we only got 3 heads of broccoli out of 16 plants. try to get some permanent beds in for strawberries, asparagus and garlic. and maybe rhubarb.

  5. Go for it Susan. May your 2011 garden be perfect. Of course, it won't be, because that's what gardening is all about....Trying to make it better each year and trying out new things each year, with ofter fail, but we tried. My best new thing last year was a Korean cucumber that was fantastic, so I will for sure try that one again. And, mostly, I wish for better summer weather, which is beyond my control and is my very best excuse for failed things. LOL

  6. I haven't given much thought to the garden this winter. I feel like I'm still recovering from trying to keep up with it this past season.

    I think possibly it would be wise to just plant part of it with a cover crop to keep out weeds and not set myself up with so much hard labor in addition to wrangling a toddler. But I bet I'll probably still plant the whole thing and end up out there every night after Cubby is asleep, working until 9 p.m.

    There may be something wrong with me.

  7. My goals are almost a carbon copy of yours... minus the Beagle part. Plus I am wanting to develop a better storage and organizational system for my seeds. My numerous small glass jars have a way of getting misplaced.


  8. My main goal for 2011 is to not plant so much. I have a raised garden bed in the City and get way too excited about peppers, eggplant and tomatoes. Their productivity ends up decreasing because I plant too many plants too close together! (But there are so many peppers and tomatoes I want to try!!!! hehe)

  9. I just received my package of Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds, thanks to your recommendation. So, I'm very excited about planting my seeds, entering in my calendar when to start some indoors, and figuring out where to plant what etc. I did get some of those cute little lemon cucumbers you recommended - actually have 21 different types of veggies and San Marzano tomatoes. I live in the city but am lucky to have a double lot. My entire back yard - except a path to the clothes line is for gardening. Last year I had over 130 tomatoes plants along with every kind of vegggie and herbs you can imagine. (You can imagine how happy I was to read your post about putting tomatoes in a bag and freezing them!)This year I'm going to get serious about the campanion planting I sort of dabbled in last year. Have to say I love the packaging of the seeds as well - so cute and retro. The people at Bakers even wrote a "Thank you" on my receipt and gave me a gift of those little french carrots - now I have 4 types of carrots to plant! Thanks for the recommendation! Love, love, your posts and all your animals - good luck with that adorable little beagle - we always had beagles when we were growing up.

  10. My goals for the year are 1) not get overenthusiastic and plant too much and 2) work on extending the seasons. Very inspired by reading Four Season Harvest.

  11. My goal: Actually stagger the planting of lettuce, carrots, etc. I always say I am going to do it but when the soil is warm and the seed packet is open and the pretty little seeds are in my hand, I must sow them, I must, I must!!!

  12. Great resolutions! I too want to keep better records and I also want to have more fun in the garden this year! These past 12 months have been all about photography for 'the book', my upcoming book on Year Round Vegetable Gardening from Storey Publishing.. we needed to plan the garden around the required photos.. so, this year, we're going to have fun - popcorn, rainbow veggies, crazy gourds and more.. there's nothing like a purple carrot or a lemon cuke to encourage kids to eat their veggies! :)

    Looking forward to more from you in 2011!

  13. Susan, I am very excited to say that my gardening resolution this year is to start. Yes, I will be planting my very FIRST garden this year. I plan to start VERY small as to not get overwhelmed (as I tend to do). I am much further south than you are and so I am not sure how similar our tactics and practices will be, but even if I cannot gain much practical advice due to zone differences, I can gain much needed inspiration. Your gardening spirit is a beautiful thing. Thanks for sharing it. -Mel

  14. Love your blog!
    My husband and I (we also live in Missouri) are excited to start our first backyard garden this year. I have found some very helpful information on your site including your older post about beets. We've been addicted to beets lately (weird, huh?) so we'll be planting LOTS of them.
    Thanks for sharing : )


March 2013 update: My apologies for the inconvenience - I know word verification is a pain - but I've had to turn it on to help stop the ridiculous number of anonymous spam comments I've been getting every day. Thanks for your understanding.

Welcome to! Thanks so much for taking the time to write. While I'm not always able to reply to every comment, I receive and enjoy reading them all.

Your feedback is greatly appreciated, and I especially love to hear about what's going on in your own garden. I know, too, that other readers also delight in reading about your garden successes, failures, helpful tips, and lessons learned. Feel free to leave comments on older posts!

I try my best to answer all questions, but sometimes it takes me a few days to get to them. And sometimes, I'm sorry to say, they fall through the cracks, and for that I sincerely apologize.

I look forward to hearing from you and hope you enjoy your visits to my kitchen garden!