To Busy to Garden?

So when speaking on this subject I think of all the things on my to do list, what my friends with businesses have on their to do lists, what my stay at home suburban mom’s have on their to do list, and what the people around me have on their to do lists… and although I often feel overwhelmed (especially with taking on the project of creating a blog and community support resource) I take solace in the fact that most people out there are overwhelmed with things to do as well.

As I was sprinkling cinnamon on my raised bed to ward of pests, my husband commented that I wanted to build raised beds and didn’t feel like I had the time to do it. He said right there before me was the raised bed I said I didn’t have the time to build and prepare for this season.  Then he said, so you said you never had time to learn to play an instrument but right there is an example of something you found the time to do you didn’t think you could get done. So I think it wasn’t that you didn’t have time to learn to play an instrument more that you didn’t make the time.

Now I don’t know how anyone else would react, but I immediately went into defense mode and started laying down excuses of why I never learned to play an instrument. Although some of these excuses were valid I thought upon it later at work and realized that he was quite correct. My desire to learn to play an instrument was always trumped by my desire to do something else. This got me to thinking about all the time I’ve spent learning about gardening over the past couple of years, and all the money I have invested into this endeavor and why?

Everything that has motivated me to pursue something over the years has been an intense desire for something combined with a passing interest. Here is what I mean: When I went into Real Estate I was pursuing an intense desire to work in a field where I could help people and make good money. My passing interest was in the Architecture and Housing design. When I went into Massage Therapy, again my passion was the same as Real Estate however my passing interest was in holistic healing techniques. Although, passing interest may not be the right word for it, as my interests have always been widespread, my focus narrows into a particular avenue of pursuit through various life circumstances.

The Azeleas are blooming!

This then made me think of my current focus of building a sustainable gardening system with perennial foods, areas for planting annual food sources, and building systems within our household for organizing and maintaining our home. And it comes down to this, my most passionate desire was always to help people, my family (which is why I was wanting to make good money before), and the family I have always desired to build. I have always worked toward that goal of acquiring a sensible marriage, that is an equal partnership full of love, passion, and shared desires in whatever way I saw getting me to that end goal. Circumstances have not allowed me to pursue that passion until now, however that end goal was always on my mind and to me learning to play an instrument was not something that was going to take me closer to that goal.

Red Clover – planted in last fall to improve the soil conditions for this year.

We make time to dedicate to the things that are important to us. As most of us do, I have entered yet another changing period of my life where I am looking forward to starting my own family and being able to care for them well. To do this, I need available time to spend with my husband and children, time to care for them, and the ability to provide for them in the best way I can and the best way I can see doing this is by adding a great deal of work to my life in learning farming techniques and building the infrastructure to support the farm that can provide fresh organic and renewable food resources for my family now and throughout the years to come whether or not I have to continue to work full time or not.

Bags of mulch, peat moss, the raised bed I’m working on, and the pilot supplies under the tarp.

All this to say, Are You To Busy to Garden? Well, we all will find time for the things that are truly important to us. So ask yourself why are you wanting to garden? Is it a passion and why? If you are just motivated to garden out of fear of this terrible world we are living in, that’s okay. But if life returned to normal and there was no threat of a food shortage but your passion resides in the healthy organic food for your family but you love walking through a beautiful flower garden. Take all this into account.

Infrastructure for hardening off seedling trays and acclimating new plants to the direct sunshine.

Please, do pursue gardening but plan accordingly. Gardening take some effort, even if you’re not creating a large infrastructure like I am. If you would rather work and pay for your organic food, consider spending less on costly systems to grow and preserve your own food and plan your garden to be useful for your current needs and for your future needs.  If you don’t really want to have all the work and time it takes to grow enough food to feed your family for a year, have a small garden for fresh tomatoes and flowers. And if you simply feel like dedicating your time to working to support your family or your lifestyle then do that, and support the local farmers with the passion to provide themselves and their community with healthy organic foods.

And as always, building a self-sustaining life is not easy, so I hope you find the inspiration and encouragement you need in this publication and to begin your journey to a healthier and more beautiful self-sustaining life.  And if it isn’t the life for you, don’t be discouraged, go small with your gardening efforts to find the comfort you need in this season. Then discover your true passion and pursue it! Support others in their passion for farming and  build your community of support so that we may all find our happy place for ourselves and our families.


The Upstate Gardener/Crafter

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