when am I going to learn

ruthieg__txFebruary 10, 2013

I'm going to be 74 very soon and I can't seem to stay away from gardening....Every year I say that I am not going to have a garden any more but then, every year, the gardening bug bites me and I am out there digging. My garden is all raised beds and should or would be easy work for most people that were less than 74 by a few years but at my age, they are still hard work...

I was outside today and I planted about 100 onions...doesn't sound like much but I had to clean the bed first....

Wondering how many gardeners we have here and how many think that they will just never be able to give it up....

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I am a gardening addict at age 62 - planted my first marigold seeds for Mother's Day when I was 5 - been doing it every year since then. All my relatives on my side of the family are garden-a-holics - it's in our genes! Nope, they'll be hauling me out of a flower bed when 'my time to go' arrives.

    Bookmark   February 10, 2013 at 4:38PM
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I am a youngster of 58, and am digging up lawn like crazy... creating bigger and bigger flowerbeds/vegetable beds.

Moni (still mailing from the library)

    Bookmark   February 10, 2013 at 4:45PM
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I am planting some of my flower seeds,getting my buckets ready for tomatoes,peppers,cherry tomatoes. It gets harder every year,and like you,I say no more, but it is in my genes too.

    Bookmark   February 10, 2013 at 5:18PM
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Ruthie, I don't plan on ever giving up anything. I am even considering expanding on some of the things I enjoy doing. I am afraid to stop, even though I have to slow down, because, well, I am slower. But as long as I can get around at all, I will still do the things that have always given me so much pleasure.

    Bookmark   February 10, 2013 at 5:34PM
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I have loved gardening all my life, even as a child! I got the 'bug' from my mother, who could get anything to grow and flourish. I mostly enjoy growing flowers, but if hubby does the digging I don't mind planting and caring for veggies. Every summer in recent years, we've had drought conditions, which discourages me. But, I always end up planting annuals and sowing seeds every spring. I have to admit, I enjoy yard work in general. Raking, weeding, pruning, everything EXCEPT mowing the lawn. That's one thing I do NOT enjoy, lol.

    Bookmark   February 10, 2013 at 5:44PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Old gardeners never die, they just go to seed. :-)

    Bookmark   February 10, 2013 at 6:08PM
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I hear you, Ruthie. I watched my neighbor, a wonderful flower gardener, whittle her garden down and finally stop. I thought it was so sad, but knew it was something I'd probably have to face at some point.

I'll be 70 this year, and have been living with pains of various kinds for years that progressively get worse. I gave up on roses several years ago. My flower beds are half the size they used to be. Part of the problem is an insidious groundcover weed that has smothered so many of my iris and other thing. I just run out of the energy to fight it.

I've bought seeds already this year, though, and will be planting four kinds of beans, big zinnias, and who knows what else this spring.

Stay strong, gardeners!

    Bookmark   February 10, 2013 at 6:25PM
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.....or old gardeners never die; they just throw in the trowel!

Well, I'm older than dirt but can't give up my gardening. I do the raised beds, but they are only about 12 inches high, so not so raised. I plant tomatoes, cukes and peppers in the home made self-watering containers. Love doing that. I also have, in other years, done the winter sowing, but didn't even get the resulting plants put into a permanent home, so didn't do that this year. Oh, I can hardly wait until spring, when all the nurseries will be calling my name!

    Bookmark   February 10, 2013 at 7:03PM
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Regardless of age, if you give up something you really enjoy especially gardening, you loose something. It is so good to get outside to feel the dirt, plant the seeds/plants and watch them grow and survive. And those veggies taste O-so good!!!

    Bookmark   February 10, 2013 at 8:24PM
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We have raised beds too but only 2 that are each about 30 ft. long. Last spring DH, who is COPD got really sick so I had to do all the gardening. FWIW I'm almost 82. Anyhow, previously I had only taken care of the herb garden and wildflowers, but with his instructions I managed. The only thing I have planted now is garlic and winter greens that the really cold weather took a toll on. I had already put quite a few of the greens in the freezer. Hadn't counted on the garlic coming up this soon but hopefully it will be okay.

    Bookmark   February 10, 2013 at 8:24PM
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I love gardening. Feeling the dirt, trimming the roses, end pulling weeds...sometimes. :) I haven't had a vegetable garden of my own, yet. Every year, I think I don't have enough time to garden, but I find the time when the itch of nice weather comes.

The houseplants keep the rest of my gardening itches at bay most of the year. None of my friends have plants because they don't want the work, but they sure do comment and admire that I keep houseplants.

    Bookmark   February 10, 2013 at 9:55PM
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Well, if it makes you feel any better, my mother is 95 and still gardens. She fills many planters with geraniums each spring. She buys at least ten hanging baskets and plants tomatoes in big containers. My son helps her with the tomatoes.

Gardening keeps you young. Keep at it!

    Bookmark   February 10, 2013 at 10:41PM
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Ruthie, I'm 63 and will have more room this year than I've ever had, almost an acre. So much to do, I'm not sure how far I'll get this first season or what I'll be able to do as far as edibles, I've got a bunch of shrubs to remove (very tired, probably original to the house), some alder (volunteers), lots of ivy that's really going to be time consuming to get out, and a ton of daily deer to argue with. What they don't sample, they lay on - many days in the last weeks I've had them bedded down in the yard right outside my floor to ceiling living room windows.

I haven't gotten as far as getting anything on paper yet, no real plan, we just moved Thanksgiving week but there are many things I haven't had room for I'm looking forward to acquiring, planting. And I'm still in the process of moving perennials from the former house. It's going to be a busy Spring :)

    Bookmark   February 10, 2013 at 10:59PM
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I've been hooked forever. I have a new house now and HUGE plans for the yard (plus 18 plants I bought during the year we rented before buying.) I was FL Master Gardener for 8 years and LOVED it. Then we moved to TX for 6 yrs. Moved back to FL about 15 mos. ago with great plans to take the MG class again last spring and get certified. Then DD announced 3 mos. later that they were pregnant with the 2nd (and the babes are now 5 and 21 mos.) so I'm needed to tend babies and MG will have to wait for about 2 years. My plan is to get certified and then give gardening lessons at the elementary school level. I'm almost 63, with arthritis in my fingers, wrists, and hips -- but I CAN do this! I LOVE growing things.

    Bookmark   February 10, 2013 at 11:20PM
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Everyone else has already said nearly everything I think on the subject. I'm 58 (next week) and sometimes I wonder why my husband and I bought this house (5 years ago) and bought our 5 acre camp property (also 5 years ago) and immediately began planting, planting, planting! So much to care for as we get older in the coming years. BUT, we love it! I can't see living life without gardening, at least so long as I am physically able at all. But, I also want to say that as we get older, maybe it is good to realize that a garden doesn't have to be perfect! I think no garden is every perfect, but so many times we strive for that unobtainable perfection. Rather then perfect, let's just aim for 'good enough' and not let every little thing bother us if it doesn't get done. Keep out most of the weeds, do things as you can (so long as your garden doesn't become an eyesore) and just ENJOY the garden and the gardening!

    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 6:57AM
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sweet_betsy No AL Z7

I hope never to give up gardening--I would find it hard to do without the "dirt therapy". I find it interesting that others feel the need to feel the dirt. When my husband complains about my lack of gardening gloves,
that is the reason I give him,

    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 7:21AM
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I love gardening, and hope I will always be able to get out in the garden. It keeps me moving and soothes my soul. I may have to adjust as I age, but I plan to keep gardening to the very end. They found a neighbor dead in his garden. That it how I would like to go out.

    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 8:22AM
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I'm 50 and it's hard on me. I think I try and do everything all in one day and then I pay the price. I didn't have a garden last year and really missed it. We had a new puppy and I thought he would just destroy it so I didn't bother. There's nothing better than homegrown watermelon and tomatoes.

    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 9:58AM
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Oh, mary52! That's what I'm afraid of - I will die in my garden, but not because I want to! I've fallen several times and have a devil of a time getting up. I do all my gardening from a standing position because of physical problems and it's tiring.

Shortly it will be the time of the year when I lift my nose to the spring air and decide I need my fix of spring, so will tour the nurseries, just looking, you know, vowing that I'm not going to buy another thing. I don't have a large yard at all, just enough to play with, but I do end up getting something to stick in the ground.

It's been way too wet here to do anything, but I enjoy tramping around seeing what little green sprout has come up since I last looked.

    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 10:01AM
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We always had a huge garden when the kids were all home. Did all the canning and freezing thing. Loved it. Continued a few years after they left home then stopped. Now we are back at it again. The past couple years we have really enjoyed it. BUT, it is way too big!!! It's funny because our two daughters have gardens and have followed in our footsteps with all the canning and freezing. When they come here they go straight to the garden before ever coming into the house. Alway leave with a car load of goodies. I gave them all my canning stuff and they have enjoyed it so much. Often we just spend the day canning tomatoes or green beans. Last year my hubby and I froze a bunch of corn. Do I need to say yummy?

For me I enjoy the flower gardening more. I have so many. Most are filled with perennials. The last couple years I finally put down more mulch and it has helped so much. My tracker holds 25 bags perfectly. I just drive along side my beds and pull the mulch out where needed. My girls always come in the early Spring and help me get started. We live back off the road and I have a large area with a big rock engraved with our name and a tulip on it out by the road. I get so many compliments on this flower bed. Put me one around the mailbox last Summer, too. Love sharing with family and friends. Tickled me when a young man that I used to babysit for some 20 years ago called one day and asked if he could get some starts. He had bought his first home. I'm going to hate it when I have to stop.

    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 11:34AM
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So glad to read all the responses. I know that I will always have something growing but at this point now, I am wondering how to get things watered if we travel...(remember we bought a motor home) I have a timer and can use that but I would rather have some one come an check it. Usually I have enough tomatoes and other goodies that my neighbor will watch it for me and reap the rewards...

Kath..walmart sells a little plastic mesh fence...cheap like 14 dollars to keep your puppy out and Morz...if you have deer like that, forget about it...They eat anything and everything and they believe that you are putting it out just for them...

I guess it is a matter of doing what you can....but I will probably always have some kind of garden...

    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 11:35AM
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I hope never to give up gardening, though I have planted more shrubs in my flower beds, so I don't have to plant as many flowers. I remember an elderly neighbor when I was younger who had a carpenter build her several large raised planters, and she's still gardening, as far as I know.

    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 3:45PM
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I am really getting the itch to start digging in the dirt.... still below freezing here, but the sun has been out for the last couple of days, so am longing for the seed catalogs to start showing up....... I have so many plans and ideas for this year..... every year I vow this year my yard and garden will be even bigger and more glorious that the previous year.. But alas my knees and back are definatly getting older, and I am starting to feel it....

    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 4:34PM
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I sure hope you will post pictures of your gardens. I only have a few things, but I love them all.

    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 4:38PM
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It appears that (at least semi-)decrepit gardeners ... and others who live alone ... need an ongoing hangover!

As in ... a string hanging around one's neck, carrying a small bag ...

... in which resides a cell phone ...

... carrying, if one doesn't make a lot of calls, a low cost minimal-usage service ...

... and with important call-in-case-of-trouble numbers pre-dialled in.

Available in case one can't get off one's knees when digging in the dirt - the garden-variety, that is. When one's spreading the community dirt ... usually there's an ear handy, whether nearby or at the end of a phone line, for when spreading the dirt changes to a need for help in an emergency.

ole joyful

    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 5:28PM
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I had about 3/4 mile of rows of veggies, last year ... and accused the landlord of ploughing up a larger area, for next year.

I've been taking 'em to a couple of churches, plus some social agencies, as well as son and his friend and my landlord.

As I live next to a settlement of aboriginals, I think that I need to check out whether I should offer some (through some agency, e.g. church) there.

ole joyful

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 4:23PM
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