Virginia is for Gardeners

Hello garden gals and guys! I didn't get a chance to chat with you last week because I was a little busy, but I'm back on track again.

I'm determined to keep the garden inspiration flowing like a waterfall and I know the best way to do that is to show other folks out there that are growin' stuff! So, come travel with me to Richmond, Virginia, where one of my gardenin' pals gets her grow on with her veggies.

Say hello to Marlo Robinson. I "met" her through Instagram (her handle is gardenchroniclez). She is growing a little of everything on her slice of the Earth. Take a look!  

Do you mind me asking your age?

I am 42  years old.

How and why did you get into gardening?

I got into gardening because a friend of mine started growing cucumbers one year and posted her pictures on Facebook. I was amazed at how beautiful they looked, so I was inspired to try it myself. Once I started, I couldn't stop. I love planting a tiny seed and watching it grow into something amazing. As a child, I would go to 'the country' during the summers and on weekends. I would help my granny shuck beans and feed the pigs. There were times I went in the field with my grandpa to help pick strawberries. He was a farmer and sold fruits and vegetables at the farmer's market. I never knew that I would grow up to have the same passion he did.

Where do you grow and how big is your garden?

I live in a townhome  subdivision and I have a fenced in backyard. My yard is not huge but it is a nice size for a small garden. My goal after my daughter graduates from college is to purchase a home with a HUGE backyard so I can have a bigger garden. 


What is your favorite thing to grow?

My favorite thing to grow is peppers. I love peppers and I always end up with a large supply from my garden.

What's one of the biggest challenges you face in gardening?

One of my biggest challenges is pests. I love being outside but I don't like bugs, slugs, worms, flies, etc. I almost gave up after the first year of starting my garden because a tomato hornworm demolished my tomato plant and, on top of that, I realized at night time the slugs come out. Needless to say, I will not check on my garden when it's dark. ☺

Why do you think it is important to grow your own food?

I think it's important to grow my own food because I am not aware of where the grocery stores get their food from. Even if it says "organic", there is no way to be 100% sure. Although, when I am not growing my own food, I try to purchase "organic" as much as possible, or locally. I also have learned something about myself:  I will try more varieties of vegetables when I grow them in my garden. For example, I have never purchased eggplant from the store, but grew some in my garden and was pleasantly surprised when I enjoyed it.

What advice do you have for new gardeners?

Start small so you don't get overwhelmed. There is a lot of information on the web and sometimes conflicting information. Focus on one or two vegetables and get as much information on them as you can and start growing. Each year add to your garden. This will eliminate information overload.

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So there you have it, gardening friends.  Are you inspired? 
Marlo's got a lot growin' on down there in Virginia and we haven't even gotten into the height of the growing season yet! 

I can't wait for mother's day to come so I can get out there and get to planting!

Before I go, here's a little collage I made of some of the other photos she shared with me. 



Until next time garden gals and guys.....

Happy farming!



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