Every year during weeding time I recall the memory of my first attempt to grow flowers.
I was living in a tiny place barely big enough for a small goldfish and me. And I knew nothing about gardening. Absolutely nothing. But this place had a small patch of land between the house and the walk to the front door. Just about 1 ft. wide, and about 4 ft. long.
It was spring and I thought it would be cheery to have some flowers instead of a barren patch of land. But I didn't want to spend a lot of money. I was renting. I was poor. And cheap. And I wouldn't have known where to buy a flower for planting anyway.
So, I purchased seeds. I don't remember what kind of flower seeds I bought, but I do remember I bought about 10 or 11 packages. I wanted a lot of flowers. And I read the back and planted them just the right depth. But I didn't space them out. I wanted a lot of flowers, so I planted every seed.
Flowers were certain to be in my future.
Except, I was dating some dud (no, that's not a typo for dude). And one day he noticed that there were a lot of little sprouts coming up in my flower garden. He said "You'd better get all those weeds out of there."
OH!!!! I hadn't thought about weeds! Weeds! What a horrible word! The thought of those weeds smothering out my precious flowers was disturbing to me. So, the next Saturday I spent all day weeding each and every weed out of that patch of ground.
And I waited for my flowers to come up.
I was so ignorant about all things gardening that I didn't even realize that those little weeds I had pulled up were actually my flowers. I wondered for months where my flowers were and why they didn't come up. Not a one! Very disappointed, I supposed perhaps the seeds were old. Only until years later, when I had my next garden, did I realize what I had done.
If I were a new gardener, I would tell myself to plant shrubs. And if I were renting and didn't want to leave the plants, I would advise container gardening. And if I could only afford a few packs of seeds, I would say - weed first, plant your seeds, then don't weed anymore!!!!
What was your first big mistake? And what advice would you give to new gardeners?