By Faith Labatos
Starting a garden this spring is not a high priority for me. My past experience with gardening has put the thought of staring another garden completely out of my head.
It was about two years ago when I first tried to start a garden with my mom and aunt. It was originally my aunt’s idea, but mom and I were on board as soon as she explained to us what she had in mind. Being the naive little girl that I was, I had the thought of a huge garden with colorful vegetables and fruits in all directions. When my mind saw such a colorful place that I could have called my own, I made the decision to do whatever I could to achieve that.
My aunt began to buy everything that she could find for gardening. Meanwhile my mom was doing research, and by research I mean go on pintrest and look up “nice gardens” until she found something pretty.
After all the research and buying was done it was finally time to the work. On nice days we would go out and work as hard as we could. I would water and weed and spend time looking everything over. We wanted our first harvest to be amazing.
After about a month of hard work our garden started coming together. No it was not a beautiful rainbow of colors like I expected but it was still amazing. I got to harvest all the sweet fruits and vegetables that we planted, but my favorite was the strawberries. The strawberries were almost perfect and what was even better was that we had about 3 bowls worth of sweet strawberries.
My first garden experience was wonderful, until it wasn’t.
It was in July when the garden started going downhill, because in July everything in our lives started going downhill. My dad was recovering from the stroke he had earlier in the year and in July there were two times as many appointments as usual. My aunt was having to work long hours, and everything got complicated and just started going crazy.
Since everything was going haywire I wasn’t able to go out by myself (being a small 9 year old with protective parents) to water and take care of the plants. So slowly our beautiful garden began to die and wither away. Our amazing colorful plants became a pile of dark green crusty leaves and vines.
So what I found out from this experience was if you want to start a garden then you have commit. It can not maintain itself. Gardens need constant care and tending and you have to put in a lot of effort for a garden to survive.