Two Summers ago I decided I wanted to shift my relationship with vegetation and develop a closer connection to Source and Earth by way of planting seeds.
"You need to learn how to take care of plants, let's go to the store and get some things for the yard", my granny exclaimed on a breezy Spring day in 2018. This was the beginning of a new world for me.
Like many older black folks in Chicago my grandmother migrated from Mississippi to come live and work in the Windy City during the Great Migration. The drastic change in lifestyle as a result of urbanization has had many impacts on the eco-system of our communities. In big cities across America people barely eat enough life giving foods let alone know how to grow any.
Me growing food is my personal little piece of purposeful reclamation and the shifting of a narrative.
Roughly two weeks ago Volume 2 of my journey to change my relationship to vegetation commenced. I proceeded to gather my supplies from last year and mosey on down to Home Depot, making sure to abide by social distancing protocol of course.
The way I see it, me going to buy soil + seeds was as essential as it gets. I picked up a couple of things that I would need to start some seeds indoors.
Kale, thyme, rosemary, and lavender were the plants of choice for the indoor portion of plant journey. All of these suggest sowing the seeds indoors around 6-8 weeks before the last Spring frost. This timetable will vary depending on what region you live in.
This seed starter set was only $3.00 and suggests that the reusable pots can be planted directly into the grown when it is time to move them outside.
I made 3 pots of Kale including the one pictured above. I put about 5-7 seeds in each container. This will definitely need to be thinned when it is time to put them outside. I learned very quickly last summer that plants need several feet apart from each other, depending on the plant type.
I think I may have put to many seeds in a few of the pots, but I am not too worried because I know all of them won't be strong enough to continue and yield any substantial harvest. Last year I started with about 13 okra plants, but only 5-6 survived and yielded the okra pods.
These are a couple snapshots of my okra from last year. I did buy new okra seeds for this year and they are organic which is superrr exciting. The organic okra seeds cost $2.39, and there's at least 40 seeds in the pack.
The last seeds to sprout were the rosemary seeds. It is my first time planting rosemary, so I wasn't sure what to expect. I was worried at first but continued showering them with love, watering them daily and wrapping them with a plastic bag some nights. This creates humidity which according to my grandmother is Kryptonite to the seedlings.
I'm looking forward to documenting more of this experience and sharing updates for curious minds. A couple resources that have been inspiring and have been helpful to me are:
If any of you are on a gardening journey as well and would like to chat, email me! I love tips and sharing conversation around all things Plant Life! Email: email@example.com <3