12 Specific Garden Goals for 2012

This year I intend to stick to the two general principles outlined in my last post (click here to read about using REASON and SPENDING LESS.)

I also have set the following specific goals for the coming year:

  1. Set up an inexpensive, DIY grow light system in the basement.
  2. Start as many plants as possible from seed.  (goal – start 75% of what I grow – plants or flowers – from seed, leaving me a little wiggle room for perennial/bulb purchases.)
  3. Collect plastic jugs and do some winter sowing!
  4. Label and/or map out locations of all spring bulbs as they come up this year so that I know where they all are.
  5. Label and/or map out all areas where I plant seed or plant new bulbs.
  6. Keep the fig trees pruned to a smaller and more manageable size to cut back on shade.
  7. Find a free or inexpensive wheelbarrow.
  8. Build 3 large, long wooden planters to replace the clutter of lots of little pots on patio.  Deep enough to handle peppers, basil, beans, and maybe a tomato.
  9. Make a wooden compost bin to replace the wire bin (top of which has been repeatedly bent down by the feral kitties who were climbing into the compost to sleep and keep warm!  Smart kitties! They’re using their winter shelters now, but the wire bins are bent and a wooden one would look nicer as well as being sturdier.)
  10. Grow enough green beans and cucumbers to make my own pickles…last year I had to buy them.
  11. Try growing one vegetable I’ve never grown before.
  12. Save seeds at the end of the season!
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15 thoughts on “12 Specific Garden Goals for 2012

  1. Those are great goals. I need to do more big containers on the patio too, but those little pots keep creeping in as I find yet another plant to start from a cutting.
    Good luck on the wheel barrel. We have found our wheel barrel to be one of the best tools we’ve purchased. I hope you luck out and find a good one someone just doesn’t want. If not, try to save to purchase a solid one. Metal and wood construction will last.
    Good luck on the goals!

    • I hear you – I also continue to find ways to add in more cuttings, seedlings, etc in smaller pots. It was nice to be able to move them around, but it did clutter things up a bit. Yes, I have a feeling a wheelbarrow will make life much easier and my back will thank me. Thanks for the tip on getting a metal / wood one. I’ll be keeping my eyes out and starting a “wheelbarrow” fund in case a freebie doesn’t materialize. 🙂

  2. Aimee we have such similar activities…although my seed growing station was not DIY or inexpensive…but I am loving it….doing a lot of my own seed sowing and hopefully collecting and trying a new veg or 2 as well as making sure i document my bulbs this year finally…I have thought about winter sowing but will leave that for next winter…

    • Hi Donna, I’m so inspired by people who start plants from seed. I find it a little daunting and I’ve been maintaining that it wouldn’t be possible for me to do since one of our indoor cats would have a field day with that! Then a friend pointed out that our basement, which is off-limits to the cats, could be a perfect place. I couldn’t argue with that! It’s time to try.

      I’ll be eager to see what new plants you try out this year and wishing you luck documenting your bulbs when they come up!

  3. Hi There! Thanks for stopping by my blog. Your garden goals sound great! I went back to growing things from seed last year and was pleasantly surprised. I set up a tiny station in my garage but I also used a heat mat to provide heat during the coldest winter months. Not sure if you would need that in your basement. I started growing Kale two years ago (from seed) and it is my favorite! Good luck with all your projects!

    • Hello and thanks for visiting! I’m looking forward to keeping up with your blog and your gorgeous photos.

      A heat mat! Hmmm…I’m not sure either. Our basement pretty warm all winter, but who knows? It’s all such an experiment to me and it will be interesting to see how it goes! I will definitely keep a heat mat in mind…it might not be a bad idea to have one just in case. Glad to hear your seed-saving efforts paid off last year!

  4. Those are great goals. Our first year of starting some plants from seed was last year. We had Decent luck, but we found the plants became very spindly. We plan to wait 2 weeks longer before we plant the seeds. Maybe beginning of April.

    • This will be my first time starting this many plants from seed. I’m hoping to connect with other gardeners near me to see when they’re starting their seeds to help me with timing. I have a couple of charts to go by, but you don’t know exactly what the weather will do anyway, so I guess it’s still a bit of a gamble!

  5. Great garden goals! There are several there that I should apply to my own garden. Tomorrow I plan to do some more winter sowing. And the new veggie I’m trying this year are Brussels Sprouts.

    • Hi Catherine! We’re in zone 7 over here, so I think I can wait a while before starting winter sowing – at least I’ll have to, because I don’t yet have all my jugs and seeds! Brussels Sprouts should be fun to grow – good luck!

  6. Definitely grow from seed! I hate to fill the comment box with links to our blog, but please stop by the seed starting posts — my husband did a huge amount of research before we built our light sets and we found some improvements for this year, which I’ll be posting about very soon. Another suggestion — go to Johnny’s Select Seeds website — they have an interactive chart to backtime the seed start time based on your last frost date. Good stuff.

    And I, too, will be doing some winter sowing — I’m saving plastic drink containers for it.

    • Thanks, Tricia! I just checked out your great seed-starting posts from last season and am very much looking forward to your upcoming post about home-built light sets! That’s great to know about Johnny’s…I’ve only looked at seeds on their site – never realized they had an interactive planting chart. Excellent! Happy “winter” sowing (or whatever season we all happen to be experiencing on any given day…)

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