So new year begins and this blog is a result of a promise to a wise friend and amazing gardener. You will find much more as you follow us on an incredible journey in the garden.

Chris already told you how I officially started–home ownership! But that is only part of the story, actually, I have been a garden lover since I can remember.  My grandmother used to quiz me as we strolled through hers. She married the lead horticulturist for Tryon Palace for a time, which fueled her garden love and, luckily, as a byproduct my knowledge. I used to say when I was in high school I wanted to be a horticulturist…not a heart surgeon or lawyer…but that was short-lived when I found out how much chemistry was involved. But I did have the honor to take a class in college with the famous Dr Clifford Parks. Not only was it cool that I walked around campus and identified plants during class, but I learned to graph, start seeds and those kinds of things…(cooler part, was I “sweet talked” my way in the class and was very fortunate to skip freshman biology for my handiwork). While I have fond memories of that class, the knowledge part has since faded into the partying past.

While many of my generation conjure up images of retired people and gardening, I think gardening has a lot to offer peeps of my era–my generation (those younger or a bit older) have been raised within the digital revolution.  We have had a far easier time than generations before, i.e. not much manual labor here. While I always joke I went to college so I didn’t have to do manual labor, I find it has tremendous value that I never imagined. And all this digital stuff has unfortunately taken away something majestic..working with your hands and getting dirty.

So the point…What’s up with the rain gauge title...well, I got one for Christmas.  Not one of those fancy Smith and Hawkins ones..just a plain old tubular rain gauge.  I feel like it is one of those rights of passage as a gardener..like getting your first watering can, or buying your first bags of dirt and compost(never thought I would spend my money on chicken poo) and many others, which we will get to later.

Here it is..mounted on my deck, ready to gauge rainfall.  Yeah, I probably could look it up…but that is not the point.  What is…actively engaged in the process…getting dirty, writing what you find down, and learning from it all.  Not sure how I am going to use that info, perhaps Chris can help me(and you), but I got one. It is installed and ready for its first collection.

First take away of this blog: why I garden, why I blog about it?

Why I garden? In short..it’s fun–working with the earth, seeing the miracle of something from almost nothing and eating veggies and herbs I grew, plus lots more. It is hard to describe actually, hence why the blog.  I wanted to share with you.  I found, even in this internet age, it is hard to find practical info on how to garden.  You usually find academic stuff, professional stuff or super-condescending beginner stuff…my quest is to share with you the joy and the knowledge that will help us all be better gardeners and make the world a prettier place. So I ask you, why you do or do not garden? What are your top 3 excuses for not gardening? Do you have info or sites you have found that could help us?

Cheers to the New Year…in the garden.

Melissa

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