Gardening is hard work, with all the soil toil and heat and the lugging around of pots. But you don’t really think about throwing in the towel until you realize that you keep making the same dumb garden mistakes over and over.
That’s when you start to second-guess yourself.
As age catches up with me, I find my dexterity less than optimal. Put simply, over the weekend, I was beginning to think my unique gardening talent lie in knocking over multiple pots of expensively rich potting soil.
But that’s just clumsy, that’s not a stupidpower.
A gardening stupidpower is when you find yourself repeating the same dumb garden mistake over and over. Gardening stupidpowers are EPIC!
The kind where you should know better. The kind you have told yourself over and over NOT to repeat.
Gardening is fun, even with all the hard work, but when you’re growing for real production, to put food on the table, garden mistakes can cost you real money.
Common Garden Mistakes
Some of the most common garden mistakes are the result of inexperience. Planting at the wrong time of year is a pretty common one, and it’s one that most new gardeners make. In fact, it’s pretty common for experienced gardeners as well, especially as climate change seems to wreak havoc with our annual growing conditions and timings.
Another common garden mistake is buying the wrong varieties for your microclimate, just because the seeds are cheap and plentiful in your area. (Yeah, I’m looking at YOU, Marketmore cucumber!)
Another bad habit I have found myself falling into is heeding the watering advice of pro gardeners from temperate zones. In fact, I could even classify that as a gardening stupidpower, except I finally learned THAT lesson.
A lot of temperate zone garden gurus say you should water deep, not often, for best results. They say it results in stronger plants.
Honestly, in Florida, along the Gulf Coast, in sandy soil, playing tough love with your annual vegetable plants through the heat of midday does not result in them digging in deep for moisture.
In my experience, it mainly results in a lot of dead plants.
My Personal Gardening Stupidpower
I must be a water-type Pokemon, because all my gardening stupidpowers involve H2O:
- Watering at night
- Watering extensively when rain is forecast
- Forgetting to water entire sections of the garden … for days…
But my really, truly epic gardening stupidpower is attempting to lay out soaker hoses AFTER putting in starts. By myself.
I’ve crushed, stomped, choked, and lassoed to death more poor innocent vegetable starts than I want to admit to. All because I’m so anxious to get their little green heads into the garden.
Hoses are bad, ‘mkay?
Garden hoses all seem to have a personal vendetta against humanity and its agriculture.
I have often wondered if hoses want nothing more than to lay in the shed, rolled up comfortably, undisturbed. I wonder if they resent being dragged into the sunlight. Perhaps they’re in pain? Does watering hurt them?
Because they will seemingly do as much damage as possible to any and every plant they come near, no matter how careful you are. If there’s any way for a garden hose to take out your flowers, herbs, or vegetable plants, it will find that way.
Soaker hoses aren’t much better, but at least you should (conceivably) only have to place them once. I don’t really like using irrigation hoses. I like to hand water — it’s meditative. So, I often decide not to bother with putting down my soaker hoses and just start adding in my little plants as they grow big enough.
And inevitably, three weeks later, I decide that I really need to put down the soakers because I’m just flat out tired of dragging the hose around every morning or even just tired of the time it takes.
And yet again, this year, this last weekend, I made the mistake of trying to wrestle them into a reasonably even distribution across the garden beds after I had already planted a few of my fall starts.
Anyway, this year, there will be far fewer summer squash than originally anticipated.
What’s Your Gardening Stupidpower?
Many philosophers say that you’ll keep repeating the same mistakes until you finally learn the lesson they’re meant to teach you.
So, how are you educating yourself in the garden this year?