Jenna Dyckman

Jenna Dyckman

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Spring is upon us and there is no better time to start a garden.

Gardening is a hobby that benefits our physical, mental and emotional wellness. No matter the size of your garden, you must tend to it daily. Daily maintenance of the garden gets you up, outside and moving. Gardening can help to reduce stress. It can take your mind off the stress associated with your daily tasks as you spend time connecting with nature.

It can be rewarding to see your plants grow and thrive in your garden. And a daily reminder that just as plants need daily nourishment to grow, we also need daily nourishment in many different areas of our life so we can thrive.

Another great benefit of gardening is you can grow vegetables, herbs, fruits and other fresh produce that you can eat. Produce grown in your garden is nutrient-dense and immensely flavorful. There is nothing like picking a fresh tomato from your garden and slicing it up for a sandwich, salad or another dish.

While there are many great benefits to gardening, it may seem like an unrealistic hobby for those who have limited space. Gardening can require a lot of space to spread out crops in bulky beds. This is space that some simply don’t have. If you have limited space, consider having a smaller garden, only growing a couple of plants each season.

Another solution to having limited space would be vertical gardening.

Vertical gardening makes use of the empty walls, fences or small spaces that one might have around their property. Instead of traditional boxes, these gardens use supports to make plants climb vertically. They are often referred to as green walls.

The options for frames are endless. An inexpensive option includes putting soil into each pocket of a plastic shoe rack. Gardeners can make use of old pallets or ladders to attach to an existing wall or fence. Some options can even be free standing. Each type of frame takes a different amount of work and money, but each can add to a landscape in a unique way.

Not all plants are a good fit for vertical gardens. Gardeners should choose plants that thrive by either climbing up or hanging down. Take into account whether these plants will wrap around the supports on their own or if they will need to be tied.

Gardeners can water vertical gardens by either drip irrigation or hand watering. It’s useful to start watering at the top so water can filter down through the whole system, benefiting all of the plants. Vertical gardens can dry out faster than garden beds, so water accordingly.

Vertical gardening not only benefits those who can’t afford the space for a traditional garden, it is also a good option for those who have physical limitations that prevent them from bending over and getting on the ground. The convenience of an eye-level garden is hard to beat.

Whatever way you choose to put together a vertical garden, make it unique to your landscape. Different frames and plants can change the whole look of your garden.

Stop by the Utah State University Extension office or call (435)752-6263 if you have any other questions regarding vertical gardening.

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