Gardening did not come naturally to me. Though I did indeed grow up with a big garden, food preservation and foraging, as I grew up and moved out, gardening was not on my priority list. AT ALL!
Growing up in a multi-generation home with my parents and grandparents present, in a very rural setting we always had a garden. I remember being sent out to harvest fresh vegetables for a salad, or a homecooked meal. I remember weeding. I remember my Opa showing me how to harvest seeds and safe them. I remember us planting. I remember harvesting fruit trees and preserving in different ways. But I did not take this with me as I grew into a young adult, into my home I built once I moved out and on.
I am extremely thankful for the knowledge that was shared with me during my childhood and am now looking back and digging deep to remember some of the lessons from back then.
I got married to a foreigner, moved to a foreign country, started building a home, started a family, moved continents again, and then again. And now... it seems we finally settled down and are building up our self sufficient life.
This year marks year three of my own garden. And each year, so far, we have doubled the garden in size, experimenting with crops and how to best plant and maintain a sizable garden, that can feed us.
This year, we are experimenting again, though we've learned from the previous years. We have planted fruit trees and shrubs. We have prepared an in-ground garden with composted manure from our livestock. We have added raised garden beds and trellisses. And we are not done yet.
For the most part, we have our warm weather crops in the ground and growing. One big lesson learned over the last few gardening seasons, was that we needed to plant crops in shifts in order to manage. This has meant, we have put additional plants into the dir over the course of a few weeks, rather then trying to fit everything into a few days. We're giving ourselves a more sufficient grace period to get things done.
We are learning that giving ourselves time, rather then rushing, brings more joy and an overall better result. Looking back we wanted to do too many things all at once. This resulted in much stress and non-desirable outcome in many cases. Rather then loosing faith and motivation, we doubled down, figured out what went wrong and learned from our mistakes.
This is one of our main reasons as to why we share our journey online, via this blog and webpage, as well as our social media outlets. We have learned lots and have been able to help people, who are looking towards a more self-sustainable living, get on their way as well.