Thursday, May 21, 2020

Little Greenhouse in the Big Woods

On a thread in my FB gardening group earlier, I mentioned that "a resurgence in gardening seems to be one of the more pleasant side effects of this quarantine." 

In reality, a resurgence of all hobbies has been a side effect. Last month I posted this question on facebook:

It was surprising to see how many replies this simple question prompted. There was such a crazy variety of activities mentioned--everything from home improvement projects to trying new recipes to building furniture from scratch. People were eager and proud to share their best coping strategies for dealing with a societal shutdown. It was pretty cute.

So my stay-home hobby has been gardening. My sis and I both became obsessed with growing things last month. Unfortunately where I live gardening is sketchy. Not only is my house on a slope, but we're on the shady side of the mountain and only get direct sunshine in any given spot for an hour or two a day. Adding to that is our elevation, which can lend itself to lower temperatures at night, even in spring. All of this makes it tricky to figure out what will actually grow here. 

So to resolve these issues, we leveled out a small piece of our property in the sunniest spot in our yard, built a short retaining wall with cinder blocks, and put in a little greenhouse!

Isn't it so dang cute?! This thing has become my joy. Clint even installed fairy lights on the inside so I can visit my plants at night. I was so worried that my veggies and flowers wouldn't make it because even though this is the sunniest part of my yard, it still only gets direct sunlight for maybe ninety+ minutes, then partial sunlight during various parts of the day. I've heard that tomatoes need 5-6 hours of daily sunlight, so I wasn't sure if things would actually grow. But after nearly a month, everything in my greenhouse is thriving! The tomatoes and peas have doubled in size, and all the seedlings in Trin's ball jars have taken off. So I think that even though our sunlight is limited, the greenhouse turns it into supersized UV rays or something. (←Totally scientific.)

Shan built a greenhouse too--before ours was up, actually--and it's awesome. Trin and my niece Cass have also gotten into gardening (all those ball jars in my greenhouse are Trin's), and my mom's yard looks like something from a magazine. So with all of these emerging green thumbs, we've been sharing our garden adventures with each other via Marco Polo. It's fun to have a common interest to share with my family.

Though suddenly I'm wondering if I got into gardening out of sheer pressure. 😂

Oh well. I love it. If you yourself are still stuck at home, I hope you've found yourself a good quarantine anti-drug.