It’s Never Too Late … Take Up Gardening

Gardening is the world’s number one hobby. In most every culture, people enjoy cultivating gardens. If you’re new to gardening and are looking to take it up in a big way, or simply dabble, resources abound.

Start with The Weekend Gardener, at Each month, a variety of new articles appear–gardening news, information on new techniques, introduction for planting, and tips from gardening veterans. Visitor-friendly tutorials are available for your viewing.

Another site,, offers a guide for beginner gardeners that is helpful whether you have an entire backyard to work with or a tiny space. Elsewhere on the web, by searching for “gardening tutorial” you can benefit from an array of streaming videos that discuss everything from starting the hobby to how professionals cultivate massive gardens.

A variety of instructional video sites, starting with, through,,,, and, can all be helpful.

When it comes to books, the Complete Guide to Gardening Better Gardens is a useful source for newbies as well as veteran gardeners. It includes 750+ photos as well as information on shrubs, lawns, roses, bulbs, vines, ground covers, fruits, vegetables, annuals, and herbs. One section of the book helps homeowners find viable options for the hurdles they face in establishing gardens. There are also dozens of useful charts to help readers with at-a-glance instruction.


General Tips

Here are random tips to help you develop your inner “Luther Burbank”:

  • Compost is swimming with bacteria, fungi, and worms that break down into nutrients which feed the soil and make for healthier more vibrant plants. Instead of adding to a compost heap, however, feed the soil in which you’ll be nourishing your plants!
  • At your local gardening supply store or online, find out what grows best in your area during what seasons and what does not. …No sense going against the grain by planting something that has little chance for success.
  • If you don’t like the build up of dirt under your fingernails while you are digging away in your garden, rake your finger nails across a bar of soft soap to effectively seal off the undersides of each fingernail. Once you’ve finished working in the garden, rinse your hands and fingernails thoroughly. Or simply wear gardening gloves.
  • When you steam or boil vegetables for dinner, rather than pour the water down the kitchen sink drain, freely apply it to your potted plants. You will be delighted to see how quickly the plants are invigorated by this vegetable “soup concoction.”
  • With herbs, the easiest way to dry them is to place several sheets of newspaper on the backseat of your car. Then, place the herbs in a single layer, roll up your car windows, and close the door. Soon, the herbs will dry to sublime perfection. As a bonus, the interior of your car will have a wonderful scent.
  • When planting young seedlings be aware of the effect of fungi which can attack them without warning. As a preventative, sprinkle camomile tea in and around the soil at the base of your seedlings about once a week. You will be pleased with the results.
  • Join the local garden club in your community – every city has at least one. You can learn a lot from veteran gardeners who’ve already gone through the trials and tribulations of getting plants to bloom. Why reinvent the wheel? Learn from others and reap.

Effective gardening is the ultimate win-win within a community. Beautiful gardening everywhere is to everyone’s benefit. So, here’s to making your garden grow!


Jeff Davidson, “The Work-Life Balance Expert®,” is a professional speaker and thought leader on work-life balance issues. He is the author of “Breathing Space” and “Simpler Living.” For more information, go to