Practical Gardening Tips for Beginners

There is never a better time than right now to get started gardening. Never mind what season it is, there is always something you can plant. If this is your first foray into home-growing, here are some helpful tips to get you started:

Start small. Pick a manageable project to begin with. A cute little herb garden, some nice rose bushes, maybe just a row of lettuce. You need to learn to walk before you can run.

Don’t go in for expensive equipment. You won’t need it, and your money is better spent on good quality compost and seeds. That old shovel you have in the shed will do just fine for now.

Don’t forget to bait your goblin traps. Contrary to popular mythology, goblins are vegetarian, and nothing will shrink your crop of carrots faster than a hungry greenskin.

What do you mean, you don’t have goblin traps? Are you stupid? How do you expect to grow anything with goblins in your garden?

OK, OK, so you might have goblins. It’s probably not the end of the world. I shouldn’t have reacted like that. If you have a hammer, nails, some netting, golf balls, an even number of pencils, and some old milk bottles, you can actually make your own goblin traps. As long as they don’t make it into the house, you should be just fine. You can deal with this.

The fridge? You found them in the fridge? Oh no. I don’t mean to alarm you here, but you may have let this get out of hand already. If they’re in your fridge, they’re in your house. If they have a nest in your house, you are going to have a serious problem trying to evict them.

I mean, they could be nesting anywhere: the attic, walls, basement, cupboards, the foundations. I know you wanted to start gardening, but honestly, I’m not sure that should be your priority right now. Rooting out a goblin infestation without the aid of a pest-control wizard is next to impossible, and I don’t need to tell you how hard it is to get a wizard to your house on short notice. I don’t know what to tell you, I really don’t.

It’s only a matter of days before they start to take over; they breed like—well, like goblins. Soon you’ll be coming downstairs in the morning to find they have finished the coffee and not bothered to refill the pot. They will make goat’s cheese in your sink. They will make you rewatch Lost, but talk over all the good bits. Before you know it, they will start homeschooling your kids, and your kids will start to talk about socialism and collective organization. You’ll wake in the morning to find they have painted your toenails using that embarrassing hot pink varnish you bought but thought better of ever using. And they won’t have been neat about it, either. You might be past all help by now.

Forget about improving your garden. Have you considered trying to sell your house?

Originally Appeared in: 
Issue Appeared In: 
Happy Hour #2