Panopoly: Ceramic art and craft, by Lynae Zebest

My Bit of Earth

I just want to share a little project I’ve been working on ever since we first started getting a few sunny days around here: gardening.

Bit of Earth 1

We have a nice big patch of very healthy soil in the back yard of our apartment building, full of earthworms and salamanders. I’ve been wanting to put in a garden of my own out there for years, but never got around to it. For a while, too, another neighbor was gardening there and I didn’t feel like sharing.

Bit of Earth 2

Since she moved, though, the garden had gotten to a state of jungle-like overgrown wildness. It was pretty darn intimidating. Also, our landlord did some remodeling last year and dumped a big pile of dirt and concrete on one side of the garden patch, which now needs to be moved. It took us about a week to clear all the accessible weeds, but we’re still not through with the massive dirt pile.

Bit of Earth 3

In the meantime I’ve been babystepping my way into gardening. I used to help my grandma weed and tend her roses when I was a kid, and I’ve read a lot about gardening, but other than a few houseplants and such, I have no hands-on experience with what I’m doing.

Bit of Earth 4

Fortunately, our garden does have some lovely plants that survived the weeds and make the place look less bare in the meantime. We’ve got 2 rosebushes, a HUGE jade plant, an even HUGER cactus (which is currently blossoming), mint (which recently got invaded by caterpillars, but I think we’re beating them back), an oleander (which I hate but am willing to keep until we need the space for something else) and 2 or 3 other plants I haven’t identified as of yet.

Bit of Earth 5

So far, I’ve planted a small lavender and a bell pepper plant (both of which weren’t looking that great for the first couple weeks, but have now suddenly decided to GROW), as well as 3 basils–1 of which died, 1 of which is barely clinging to life, and 1 of which may just pull through. I tried sowing some radish seeds straight into the soil, but I think the slugs or snails got them before I even saw them. So now I’ve started a bunch of different seeds inside, and so far so good.

Bit of Earth 6

Soon I’ll share some updated pictures of the garden, including the potato tower, as well as what we’ve been doing to combat the neverending tide of snails!