Reader Garden Before And After-Tuesday Garden Party


Hello, friends! I’m excited today to share with you a reader’s garden- complete with before and after photos. This is part of the lovely email I received from Kelly:

After reading about your garden for a year now, and seeing all the produce and canning……I was finally inspired to try One More Time!  I live up in Damascus, Oregon, lots of berry farms, cow pastures, and nursery growers all around, and every year I would try to plant a garden on my Lil’ One Acre O’Happiness……and the ground would bake rock hard, the weeds would always take over, and I would look at the ones that were taller than my 5’8” frame.

Kelly was specifically inspired by my posts on designing a garden to be less of a chore to weed and prepare (like Design a Garden for Easy Care and More About Weeds)- obviously because of her previous experiences. Here is the space she started with:

After dealing with the leftovers from building their barn (and recycling the swing) they were able to turn the space into this easy-care raised bed garden:

Isn’t this great? There are a couple of really good points to be taken from Kelly’s garden, I think.

1. Make it a family (and friend!) affair. Kelly’s family friend (in the green shirt) used his tractor to level the area and help her husband. Her husband (blue shirt on right) made the beds. Her son put together the trellis and her daughter helped fill the beds with soil and spread cedar chips.

2. Start small. I’ve said this before- many beginning gardeners give up because they start too big and get discouraged. Kelly says she is “starting small, because I don’t know how well this is going to work out, but we left room to expand if this garden works as well as we hope!”

3. Design for easy care. Lined and mulched paths mean no weeding and good soil in the beds mean less weeds- and more time for the good stuff!

4. Make it pretty. Why not add a trellis and make the garden somewhere you enjoy being?

She ends with, “Now isn’t that a garden you just can’t wait to get started in?!” I wholeheartedly agree- those lovely beds do make me want to plant something right away!

Thanks for sharing, Kelly, and I’m happy to know you were inspired by AOC!

What’s going on in your gardens?


  1. says

    Hurray for Kelly and for not giving up! I have been gardening for over 40 years and felt very defeated many a time. We all know how much time and energy goes into a garden, and when I would be nearly ready to harvest my rewards, I would find the garden destroyed by the local deer, year after year! We have finally mastered keeping them out and can actually enjoy the ‘fruits’ of our labors. At last!
    Kelly’s garden is a beauty, also. I’m sure she will have years of pleasure in it!

  2. says

    It is just lovely! Lots of hardwork but bet you’re thrilled! A useful space. I grew my first tomatoes this season and some were eaten by bugs but the ones that survived were so much better than those from the supermarket. Enjoy it.

  3. says

    Gosh that looks really great, would love to see more when it is all planted out. My dream is to have a little place in the country and grow veggies and have chickens running around…I will get there one day!

    Lee ☺

  4. says

    I am a big believer in mulch. We have a problem here though – surrounded by gardens that don’t tackle their weeds so the seeds migrate to my garden. I am always inspired when I visit. I appreciate you being a gracious hostess,

  5. says

    Starting a new garden is sort of like raising children…a labor of love. We are still adding to our front yard remodel and this week my husband surprised me with a garden arch made with his loving hands.
    Thanks for hosting the garden party…almost missed this week but I came in under the wire. :)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>