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The Lazy Couple’s Guide to Gardening

Want a garden? Follow our tips and then kick back and enjoy the fruits (and veggies) of your labor.

Photo by Ritzco

Want a garden? First, be sure you have some spare time. Suck it up—you only need a few hours per week.

Next, find a good spot (most plants love light). Then tear out any offending sod and add compost to enrich the soil (yep, even if it was once Fido’s dumping ground). Buy and plant seeds and seedlings (it’ll be easy on your wallet, we promise!). A couple times a week, water (wilted leaves and crumbly soil mean you’re too lazy)—just set up a sprinkler. Once a month or so, mix plant food in with the water. Fertilize, deadhead and weed regularly (no pot involved, sorry!). In the fall, cover the spot with mulch (pile it on) and then kick back and enjoy the fruits and veggies of your labor.

Here are some garden staples to get you started:

Petunias
Try and kill ’em. We dare you.

Tomatoes
Stick these babies in a cage to keep them happy. Perfect for making your own salsa!

Basil
Muddle a few cups of this with a bit of Parmesan, olive oil, pine nuts, garlic, salt and pepper, and presto... Pesto!

Chives
Mince a handful and sprinkle on potatoes to add a little zing. Cut often so the leaves don’t get tough—sorry, if the chives flower, you’re too late!

Leaf Lettuce
Sprinkle seeds every couple of weeks; they’ll keep growing and growing and growing...Don’t like worm salad? Wash your lettuce first.

Marigolds
Plant French marigolds as borders. They help ward off icky insects.

Peppers
Sweet or spicy, it’s up to you! If they’re hot, wear rubber gloves when you pick ’em.

Cosmos
The more sun they get, the more they’ll flower.

Nestperts: James FD Martin, home gardener extraordinaire; Nicholas Staddon of Monrovia nurseries, Don Zeidler of W. Atlee Burpee & Co.

Check out our favorite spring blooms
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-- Ellie Martin Cliffe

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