When you first start gardening you may have a million ideas. I’m definitely guilty of this, and I think that’s okay! Get one thing going and then another. When you reach a point that you can’t keep up, then it’s time to streamline, but diversity in crops, projects, and environment is good. As well as diversity of thought.
In our small plot of land, we explore a variety of ways of gardening and adding diversity to the landscape and we are always learning. We make mistakes, we have fun, and sometimes we are successful and get something from the garden to eat.
I recently helped a friend of mine with some prep for an area in his garden that he wanted to plant lavender. In the preparations of his garden we were removing a bunch of catmint. I don’t really have a use for catmint, but I also didn’t have any in my landscape, so I took all the plants we removed from his garden and brought them to mine. I may not be using actively using the plants, but the bees sure are! At least twice a year when the cat mint blooms, the plants are just alive with buzzing of all different variety of bees.
Mixed in with the catmint I got another type of plant that I can’t even identify (yet), my best guess is that it’s some sort of salvia or possibly a relative of lavender, it has great purple flowers too, but is definitely not catmint. I’ve planted it right in the middle of the swale I built for the catmint and it seems to be flourishing quite well.
We also have an area in our small lot where we’ve planted four fruit trees, the long term goal is to build a mini food-forest in that area, thus increasing the diversity of the lot in small increments over time. We currently have two pear trees and two nectarine, we plan to add some shrubs and berry bushes between those and perhaps some ground covers and lower growing plants between those. But it takes time!
Don’t be afraid to diversify! And don’t be afraid to let the process take time and run it’s course. Don’t be afraid to fail either.