Gardening · Homesteading · Urban Homesteading

The Accidental Garden

I can be a lazy gardener and I have no shame in it. There’s just a lot of things that maybe I should get to, but the real chores keep me busy. So I just never get back to it.

And the number one area is my “compost pile”. It sits on the far edge of the growing fields and is a mess. When we do harvesting, all the scraps go there that the chickens don’t eat. Rotten potatoes? “Go throw in the pile” Onions that didn’t grow right and went to seed? “Go yeet them out there”. And that’s what it became. Where plants deemed not worthy for the main garden beds and the fields went to die.

Except they often didn’t.

When the greenest area is the potatoes.

So many flowers this year on the potatoes.

And look at the early harvest? They come out clean, not covered in dirt. They are usually not far below the surface, so easy to pull out. These were not washed, picked only a few minutes before taking the photo.

Feral Calendula. I threw plants I thought were dead. They were not – or at least their seeds were not. I have had multiple plants grow in the last 2 years in the pile.

A lot grows out there. I harvested broccoli this spring, that I had thrown plants out last late fall that didn’t grow well. I have purple cabbage growing. Chive plants. Tomato plants. Onions producing massive flower bulbs.

And it is never watered nor weeded. Much of it is growing out of old chicken coop material, so it is a blend of pine shavings and chicken poop. The richness of the “soil” goes far. The plants are deep green and thriving.

Learn to have an accidental garden. It might actually grow better than your carefully maintained one……Find a corner you don’t care about, and just toss plant material there. And you might be surprised the next year!

Another great example is I moved the chickens out of our orchard, and now I have many random plants growing from seeds left behind from produce treats I threw in for them. We have at least 10 wild tomato plants growing. These ones I have decided to water, and they are growing fantastically.