Gypsy Gardening: How to put down roots when a move is in your future
It’s definitely springtime! Stores, nurseries and garden centers are brimming with all the essentials for planting gardens and flower beds! In the past, I’ve always looked longingly at people’s beautiful flowers and vegetable harvests and thought that would never be something I would be able to have. With moving often, it just seemed silly to try and cultivate a garden in the yard of one of our rental properties or I thought there wasn’t much use if I could only get one year of gardening out of all the hard work I would put into it.
But, this year my three-year-old son really started taking a big interest in farming and all things outdoors and I started looking into what options there might be for a”gypsy farmer” like myself.
I started my planting this year with my trusty old pot that I purchased at a garage sale several years ago. Sometimes pots can be really expensive and I tend to not want to spend a huge amount on things that no one really notices anyway. I have found that you can purchase super cheap pots from garage, estate and auction sales. What might cost you $10 to $30 at a regular store can be bought for just a few dollars second-hand. This is always a huge bonus for me because being a very novice gardener, the less I invest initially, the less I will be disappointed if something doesn’t work out in the end.
I planted bright impatiens in the pot this year because I love that they are super colorful without being very expensive at all! They usually come in a variety of colors in one package and they spread a bit throughout the season so it can really fill out a pot! I feel like they are the no brainer flower for beginners! And have I mentioned that planting is such a fun thing to do with your little ones? They will absolutely love it! My son dug out his sand toys and loved getting his hands dirty! We had such a fun morning and now he loves helping me check on everything and watering for the plants!
Next, I learned from my husband’s aunt about a neat reusable fabric planter called a Smart Pot. Smart Pots are thick fabric planters that come in a variety of sizes and can be used to grow flowers, herbs or vegetables. The BEST part is they can be placed on any surface and can be emptied, folded up and reused the next season! Amazing, right? I did a little research and found that there are a ton of options for sizing and shapes! And they are really reasonably priced (Check out all the options here!) I ordered the medium-sized raised bed option online and got planting right away!
I planted cilantro, tomatoes, lavender, basil and lettuce (and a few extra flowers I had)! I’ll be honest, I really just let my kiddo pick out what looked fun and didn’t do much research on what is best to plant together, but I figure this will be our experimental year! For more tips on companion planting and gardening tips, check here and here.
One more temporary gardening idea came from a friend who also lives an unpredictable and transitory lifestyle. This year, her husband built her raised garden beds where their family planted tomatoes, green peppers, onions, strawberries, cabbage and broccoli and she plans to plant some green beans soon! This family is also scheduled to move again this year, and they will take the planters with them and do a garden in a new backyard next year!
How cool are those planters? Just perfect for little hands that want to help out, don’t you think?
So, after a little research, I think I’m a lot more excited about the possibility of growing some food and some beautiful flowers than I was before. Here’s hoping for at least a few tomatoes and maybe some basil for a caprese salad this summer! Anything more will just be icing on the cake!
Do you have any gardening tips you have for moms that aren’t stationary or can’t plant in the yard of their rental property? We want to hear your tips! Let us know in the comments or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org! Happy Gypsy Gardening!
-by Emily Robertson