Thursday, January 22, 2009

And The Garden Coaching Goes On

I was lucky enough to meet three more garden coaching clients these recent winter months - and also donated a garden coaching package to a local school fundraiser and silent auction.

I thought it might be good to share a little on what each client is being coached on . . . helping more people understand how garden coaching works.

The first client has a 30 foot bed in front of her house. We just worked on prepping the bed, getting compost down and talking about some low-maintenance shrubs and perennials for that spot. She's also excited about planting a few annuals.

Another client is very interested in growing her own food. We reviewed her house for the optimal planting sites and a plan for foiling the deer. She is going to start an herb bed and a vegetable garden with lettuces and greens in the spring and tomatoes in the summer.

And this past weekend I met with a young mom who would like to brighten up her property with some trouble-shooting landscape designs and old fashioned favorites. She would like to see things fill out at a decent clip - so my plan for her will include shrubs, shade-loving plants, drought-tolerant plants and some plants that will prevent erosion.

Each client receives a plant list (with photos), local resources for plants, seeds and supplies, as well as a timeline. Keeping things simple, focused and streamlined. The garden coaching package also includes unlimited follow-up phone calls, emails, support.

As I am getting ready for spring - I would love to hear from you. I worry that being so close to (and, um, obsessed with) gardening - I might lose sight of what new gardeners need and want.

What would you like to see or learn from a garden coach?

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'm not young, just immature!
- Client #3

Tracey said...

You wear your mommy-hood well!!

andrea said...

i've been reading your blog for a while, but i don't think i've commented before. i'm a new gardener (kind tomato plants last year gave me a beautiful crop despite a lot of neglect, sigh.) and i _love_ the idea of a garden coach... besides what you've mentioned, i think i would love to learn more about local resources -- good nurseries, groups, whatever -- as well as have a nice reading list to kinda browse.. there's so many gardening books out there (i should know, i'm a librarian), it's a little overwhelming to us newbies, but i'm sure you have a few favorites that any new gardener would love to come across..

just my two cents. thanks for blogging!

lotta said...

Well personally, I would like a garden coach who is willing to kick my behind to get me out there to face the disasters. I have an old, beautiful garden, with "good bones" plenty of gigantic trees and tons of potential... when we first moved in I worked in my garden all the time... then life caught up with me, started a new business, kids, music lessons, soccer practice, the list goes on... By now the decline is so severe that I am just too embarrassed to walk out there. It is sad. Once in a while I get a burst of energy and will tackle something specific, and its always satisfying but never enough. Help...

Tracey said...

Andrea and Lotta -

Your thoughts and ideas are wonderful and SO helpful. You really have no idea. THANK YOU!

Lotta, Your gardens are lovely. I have seen and drooled over the photos of it. Just give me a shout when you need that kick - :). Anytime . . .

Ellen Kirby said...

I'm glad to find your blog. It is right up my alley as I've just begun my garden coach service here in Winston Salem ,NC My blog is GardenCoachWS.blogspot.com You have helped and encouraged me. Thanks! Oh I have another more general blog "How I Love to Garden" at kirbyplant.blogspot.com

Ellen Kirby

Anonymous said...

Although I've read EVERY book about laying out a design for a border, I just don't get it when I'm out there with shovel in hand. I never believe that plants will grow and fill in, and although I get that drifts concept when I see it in beautiful photos, I just can't make it work in practice. Sooo, I would love someone to take my hodge podge of plants, and make it into some kind of cohesive plan that would look good. Also help me with a shopping list for this.
I can grow 'em, just can't get 'em to look good together. Also, doesn't help that I like the wild cottage garden look which I believe is much harder to achieve than it appears, sigh. This is the bane of my existence.
Sandra in MD

Libby said...

I heart my garden coach :0)

I'd love to have you back out here soon with a lesson on maintaining your woods. We "walked the back 40" lol! this past weekend and were embarrassed by the amount of falling or fallen trees...

Tracey said...

Sandra - The cottage garden look IS tricky. Absolutely. Just remember - you can keep moving those plants around until you see something you like. Susan Harris garden coaches in Maryland - maybe you can give her a call?

Libby - You are too sweet . . . a woodland garden can be magical. We'll chat soon . . .

Black Thumb Girl said...

Man, I need a garden coach badly.

I could sure use some help learning how to start seeds correctly indoors, set up a hydroponics system, set up a concordance of the plants I'm growing and a logbook of their watering/feeding schedules, or how to best supplement the soil.

Also I have no idea how to build tomato cages or a pea trellis.