We left off on a basic overview of what is required to start and grow a garden. In this post we will delve into a more detailed approach.
Like my older sister I too feel that wasting things Is just plain dumb. the world has only so much of some things and most things can be used in more way then just its intended purpose. I have to be cautious about this fact as I could easily become a hoarder.
As said in the first section in this post, you must have soil in order to plant a thriving garden. Composting organic materials is by far the cheapest way to go. there is a science to this however, percentages of green matter to brown matter, moisture content, the temperature of your compost pile(the key word here is micro organisms). I could dedicate a several post to this(it is in the works as you read this). the basics however are simple; take green matter and combine it with brown matter, turn and water. the process will happen as long as the micro organisms within the pile stay alive. Even a pile more or less left alone once formed will break down but at a slower rate.
Once you have secured you fertile soil(or compost) you will need a place to plant in. This part could be combined with acquiring quality soil in more advance gardening methods (more of a permaculture style garden) but I will stick to simple means for the hobbyist gardener for the moment(I will add secondary posts for the more advanced undertakings). In this post we will start with container gardens. there are three levels of gardening containers in my opinion
Free: reuse containers from thing you bought already such as the plastic container of cottage cheese in the back of your fridge or for good seed starter pots you can form small pots out of toilet paper roll centers. the limiting factors are what the container held (you don't want to use a container that held any kind of toxic chemical) and your imagination
Cheap: you get to test out your tag popping abilities at the thrift store, yard sales or give your local dollar store a visit to see whats available. solo cups, small paper cups and various containers can be found for little money.
More expensive: sometimes having things designed for the purpose they are being used helps make your gardening skills seem more then they are. For the initial setup you will need Seedling Starter Trays, 3 Inch pots, 5 gallon pots. All of which can be reused until the plastic begins to break down
We will assume you are using the products on the more expensive side of the realm as they are less of a variable in the overall scheme of things. at this point you have soil and containers, you need seeds. I have found little difference in most of the seeds I have planted thus far. seeds can be acquired almost anywhere during the gardening season and for the most part inexpensively. You are the one who must determine what you want to grow.
On the next post we'll start with seeds and preparing them for planting using different methods. I have an unconventional method that has proven to be reliable(roughly a 90% germination rate) and a few stand by methods that have been around for a while with a little twist to them.