By Anna Doll
I am the gardening guru at my school, and with thirty-two raised garden beds, we have lots of space to grow new and enticing varieties of the standard spring fruits and vegetables. As an organic gardener, I find that it’s much safer, and infinitely more rewarding, to start our plants from seed.
But, oh, so many choices! I sent out an email to our gardening teachers inviting them to make their own selection of plants they’d like to grow in their classroom raised garden bed. As I was tallying the choices, I couldn’t help but get excited about the many and diverse varieties of tomatoes, peppers, squash, herbs, melons, corn and other vegetables we will be propagating from seed in just a few weeks.
The children will be watching for the first sign of green popping through the soil, waiting for the first leaves to form so that we can pop them under the fluorescent lights. Then we start the nurturing process—water, organic fertilizer, at least 14 hours of light, and a stable soil temperature for the growing root systems. At the same time, cold-hardy plants like spinach, peas, lettuce, broccoli and other brassicas will be directly seeded in the soil.
At last, the tender plants we’ve been growing inside can go out for a few hours at a time, getting a chance to “try out” the weather. In time they will stay outside overnight in the cold frame for a week or so to harden against the elements, getting ready for that shady afternoon when they are planted in the garden.
Unfortunately, not every plant will resemble the glossy picture on the cover of that seed catalogue we perused in December. And that “hardy producer” guaranteed to produce hundreds of pounds of delicious tomatoes may lose the battle against a lowly cutworm in the middle of the night. You pay your money (or plant the seed!) and take your chances.
This is where I am today. Planting that first seed in the garden of my self-publishing career. I’m optimistic that the time is right for my stories and my voice. I still carry that self-doubt that all writers do that the stories I want to tell, and how I write them, won’t resonate with a sufficient number of readers to make any money at it. But if you never put yourself out there, it’s a self-fulling prophesy. That I know, from experience.
So here goes! I hope you’ll follow my journey and will be sufficiently curious about my writing to give me a try. There will be a novella setting the stage for my Logan Springs series, and Carson’s story. I will re-release my first book, Sidelined by Love, with some changes, this spring, and Strike Three, You’re Mine will follow early this summer.
I hope you’ll come along for the ride!
For those commenting today, I am offering the chance to win a copy of When in Paris, a New Adult novel by my friend and fabulous author, Beverley Kendall. I read this book in one sitting…it is a phenomenal read!