I keep wishing that I lived closer to nature; in fact, if you were to check my most recent Trulia searches, you’d see that I’ve spent hours looking up North Carolina homes surrounded by lush, tree-filled land that seriously puts our Bronx backyard to shame. But despite my burgeoning obsession with the Old North state, I’m not going anywhere soon because my family, my boyfriend, and my job all remain here in New York. So I decided to compromise.
I mentioned to my dad that I wanted to take over a small plot of land in our backyard. I thought he forgot about it, until one day I came home from work to see him building a garden box at the edge of our yard near the neighbor’s wire fence. After a trip to Home Depot last Saturday night, we lucked out with sun and a temperature in the mid-80s on Sunday—a perfect day for planting. My dad helped me mix the soil with mulch to help retain moisture in the earth, and he also gave me advice on where to plant each flower, herb, or vegetable in my new garden.
I’ve never had much of a green thumb (I’m pretty sure I accidentally killed at least two cacti in high school), but I’m going to try my hand at gardening in hopes that I might cultivate some fresh veggies and spices for our dinner plates. I truly believe that eating natural, home-grown foods is one of the best keys to good health.
You might never have guessed it, considering that I keep hand sanitizer on my desk at work and wash my hands after nearly every step in a recipe, but when it comes to gardening, it turns out that I don’t mind getting my hands dirty after all.
From left to right: Scarlet Runner (a type of edible flower), lemon thyme, heirloom tomato, purple bell pepper, orange snack peppers, striped tomato, purple basil, pineapple-scented sage