Monthly Archives: June 2007

Business is Like a Vegetable Garden

We planted a garden again for the first time in about 8 years. Living at
high altitude, gardening is doubly difficult. Some of my kids have never
gardened before, so they are learning fresh.

First, you plan the garden. Where will you put it so it has the best
chance of succeeding? Which crops will you grow? If you choose the wrong
ones for your area, or for your soil, they’ll either die, or be twice as
hard to grow. And you make sure that the entire plan is actually doable
– not so big you can’t keep up with it, big enough to make it worth your
while, and designed and laid out so that it will be as easy to maintain
as possible. You might think about mulch, or pest management, or other
long term maintenance items, and how to implement wise timesavers to
keep it all as efficient as possible.

Then, you prepare the ground. You have to dig a lot, and then you have
to take some crap and use it for good rather than just wallowing in it.
You may need some help, or to borrow a tool or two.

Next, you get in and sow some seeds – you don’t know which ones will
sprout and which ones will die, so you throw a few extra into each hole.

Then you water. And water. And water. For three weeks you wait to see
signs of anything coming of what you already spent so much time doing.

Just about the time the sprouts start to show, some weeds crop up. They
can just suck the life out of the garden if you don’t nip them quick. So
you KEEP watering, and you start weeding. It can get discouraging at
this point, but that is the requirement of gardening, so you do it.

Eventually you have nice plants that look just great. Your garden, if
tended right, begins to show signs that it is going to give you a
reward. Because you still just have potentials, no vegetables. At this
point though, it is easy to keep going because you can see that it is
likely to pay off – as long as you don’t get complacent and slow down.

Eventually, the crops start to appear – small at first. Some can be
harvested early, but not too many. If you take too much too soon, you
miss out on the bumper crop!

And then the plants start to bear so much that you find yourself giving
away your hard earned results to anyone whom you think might enjoy them.
In the season of bounty, generosity feels just great, especially when
you realize that no matter how much zucchini you give away, there will
still be enough for you, even if you store as much as you have room for!

Business can be like that – but without winter coming to wipe it all out
at the end of the season. But where you put in months of work for a
garden, you put in years with a business.

I think as we have distanced ourselves from the soil, we’ve lost a few
of the inborn understandings that we once had – kids used to know from
raising animals and growing crops, that you had to give it a lot before
it would pay you back. How much feed and care and training do you give a
colt before you ever get to ride him?

So where is your garden? Have you sown enough seed? Have you watered it
after you sowed it? Did you weed it and tend it even when it wasn’t
certain that there would be a crop to reward you? And if your business
is producing a bumper crop, are you showering the needy with zucchini?

Grow a Garden!

Gardening doesn't have to be that hard! No matter where you live, no matter how difficult your circumstances, you CAN grow a successful garden.

Life from the Garden: Grow Your Own Food Anywhere Practical and low cost options for container gardening, sprouting, small yards, edible landscaping, winter gardening, shady yards, and help for people who are getting started too late. Plenty of tips to simplify, save on work and expense.