“What is a weed, but a plant whose virtues have never been discovered”
Ralph Waldo Emerson
We have a large lot surrounding our cabin. It is too big for two people to maintain. For the most part I do the farming and Ms Simple does the gardening. The orchard and farm sections of our lot are very dull and utilitarian. Our garden is beautiful and peaceful thanks to hard work and good planning. I think her gardening approach is worth sharing because it really epitomizes the simple living ethos.
I’d sum her gardening approach up as:
What this means is that she is prepared to spend hours moving and replanting to change the shape and form of the garden in ways that make it look beautiful while at the same time recovering more land to plant produce. All while minimising the ongoing maintenance requirements.
She employs any number of techniques like wild flower and herb ground covers, plant swaps and cuttings from neighbours to replace rampant high maintenance planting. Selecting only slow growing evergreen perennials, new trees or shrubs. She is very effective in the use of straw and mulch to reduce weed regrowth and weeding requirements. She is very calculated in the way that she mass plants species to reduce maintenance tasks and clever in cultivating box hedges to ensure that the main path access way doesn’t constantly need a hair cut.
She prefers hardy plants and flowers to more delicate varieties and any plant that seeds like it’s on roids won’t make the grade.
This means we enjoy being in our garden more than we need to work on our garden and that is simple living.
I suspect that if she took over the farming aspect she’d grow enough to feed twenty people on our half acre with about a quarter of the effort I need to put into growing a single shallot and two sick looking tomatoes.