When you Need a New Beginning...Try a Winter Pot

I hope this post doesn't get lots of hits for people searching for winter pot...I certainly think they will be disappointed when they find a post about gardening and such...

WAIT - don't run...I know you heard the word "gardening" and thought you should check out because that is really not your thing, but just hold up a few minutes. give me 3 minutes and 25 seconds of your time and you might find out that gardening ain't so bad and it might be worth your while. 3 minutes. 25 seconds. (How do you measure...a year in the life...It's all about...LOVE! Sorry...RENT fans, you get it...other friends -- well I just wasted 10 seconds of my 25...)

Moving on...I don't know about you, but January for me is more about new beginnings than it is resolutions. The resolutions all kind of just stay the same. There are always the ongoing goals of losing more weight, spending more time with the kids and growing spiritually, professionally and intellectually. Those never really change...there are lists all year long...goals all year long...constant reevaluations all. year. long. Anybody with me? JANUARY however, is the chance to start anew. The slate is not wiped clean...the goals continue, but the slate gets a good old washing with soap and water. You know how the teacher used to wipe the blackboard with an eraser all day long and it would erase the words, but there was still a film of chalk and the blackboard turned greyboard? Then every few days, she would select a couple students to fill a bucket with hot soapy water and clean the board top to bottom. The deep black of the chalkboard was back once again...AHHH.... Was I the only 3rd grader that delighted in those days?

Well today it is January. It is not New Years. There are no resolutions. There ARE fresh starts however. That chalkboards 4 seconds....I'm counting...)

This is my winter pot. It looks very similar to what I imagine my internal organs to look like come December. You see, this pot held summer bulbs. They flowered and were beautiful, but withered and are frozen. There is a bunch of stuff dumped on top (good stuff for the garden like banana peels and coffee grounds, but STUFF nonetheless) and new projects added (see those potatoes?). If you are like me, you ate a lot and didn't exercise much over the Holidays...you were gifted wonderful presents that are still hanging around your house without a home and you have a million new projects you want to get started. All of those things are good, but put together, they make a jumbled mess.

While I can't completely help you with the jumbled mess of a treat laden body and gift laden home, I CAN give you a quick and easy way to turn a summer pot into a productive winter pot. It is like starting all over again. It turns trash into food. It is that blackboard in third grade all over again...fresh, clean - a new start.

First things first. Get a pot. Bigger is better, but huge is horrible. You want a big enough pot for 3 or 4 layers of plantings, but huge pots are a pain to move. Hypothetically, you already have a pot with bulbs or fragile perennials that you moved inside for the winter. If you don't, no biggie...skip the bottom layer this year.

Your soil is tired, probably a little grey and perhaps dry. That is fine. Start adding a few composting materials such as banana peels, egg shells and coffee grounds. Not a lot, just a little. This layer will compost and provide nutrition to the pot - refreshing the whole shebang. (Imagine what fruit and spinach smoothies for a month would do for your body...that is what your mini-compost will do for the pot). Now check out your pantry. Chances are there are a few potatoes growing sprouts.

If not, get a few potatoes from your local seed store or use my PANTRY POTATOES method.

Layer a few potatoes and then cover completely with brand new potting soil. The potting soil should be new because you want to add fresh, rich soil that will help refresh the entire pot.

Once the pot is full, you will not be able to see any of what lies beneath. The scraps will compost, the new soil will feed and refresh the old and the potatoes will start to grow. Eventually, the bulbs will start to grow as well. To top off your pot, add seeds of cold hardy veggies. I am growing beets, turnips and radishes. There is just enough room in the top of the pot for them to grow and they will have the benefit of the new, fresh loose soil to grow in.

Here is a better outline:

SO...as the clock winds down...basically what I am saying is:

1. Needs fresh start? Layering a bit of new soil over the old will refresh the entire pot and look fresh and new. (Forget past indiscretions with chocolate cake, and cover your past gluttony sins with hours on the treadmill...)

2. Too much STUFF everywhere? Put it to good use and cover up the mess. Use those composting materials to nourish the soil, but cover them up so you don't have to look at them! (Need to organize your closet? Start by figuring out what is trash and trash it. Then hide everything else behind a closed door, under a pretty blanket or in a new box. It will still be there to go through later, but the chore won't be as big).

3. Too many projects filling your mind? Divide, Combine and Conquer. Use 1 pot for 3 things. Hibernating summer bulbs, new potatoes and seed grown veggies. (Are there goals in your life that you could combine and conquer? Can you reduce the time you spend stretching yourself thin?).

DING-DING-DING-DING-DING! Time's UP! Did you make it? Did you give me that full 3 minutes, 25 seconds? Do you feel like you need a tiny little fresh start? It is amazing what a little potting soil and a few new crunchy seed packets can do for you. Run out and try...I promise you will feel a tiny bit better. (I also do NOT promise that you will not become addicted to gardening...just warning you...)

Go on now! Divide and Conquer!! Plant plant plant! Come back and tell me all about it!
...and don't forget to come back tomorrow for the super cute plant markers!

Cheers and blessings to you and yours chicas!

Linking up to The Girl Creative today!


Christi said…
What a fun idea... I know just what I can use. And your "radishes" marker is oo cute!
Christi said…
Forgot to ask: would you be interested in sharing more about your "other" gardening journal? The ones with tags and info? I am just starting to garden on our property where NOTHING is planted, & I would love to see what things you included & what kind of info. you recorded!
Amy Renea said…
Hey Christi -

This post goes into a little bit of detail about my journaling :) Hope it helps!! :) Thanks for visiting and your kind comments!