My First Garden

Once I opened my photo boxes to find a picture of my current house from back when I first planted the crabapple and spruce, I discovered all kinds of garden pictures from my past. I don't recall taking a lot of pictures of my gardens in the film camera days, but it appears I took my fair share including...

This picture of my first garden.

This wasn't the first time I had planted and tended flowers and vegetables... I grew up doing all of that... this was just the first garden that was my own.

It was a small open area next to the patio of my ground floor apartment. I planted as much as I could in that space, including snapdragons, dahlias, glads, zinnias, tomatoes and green beans. Since the patio was fenced in, and in the middle of an apartment complex, I had no problems with rabbits.

I didn't keep a garden journal back then, circa 1984-85, but I do remember that I bought a shovel, my first hoe, a trowel, a rake, and a garden hose so I could properly tend this little plot of land.

Who knew that first hoe was just a beginning? It's the first one shown in the hoe collection post.

How about a walk down memory lane to some of the first gardens of other garden bloggers? Who has pictures?


  1. Well that's pretty easy. I'm blogging about my very first garden. I figured why not go all in!

  2. Wow! What a lot of lovely flowers.

  3. Carol, it was so long ago when we made our first garden, that any pictures still around are probably in black & white.

    That's quite a garden for an apartment patio!!

    Annie at the Transplantable Rose

  4. Great post, Carol! I actually have some pictures of my 4H garden I had when I was about 10 years old or so. I'll scan the photos and do a post in the next couple of days.

    You were a pretty fantastic gardener right off the bat, weren't you? :-)

  5. Lovely flowers and so many of them too! Your first garden and your first hoe eh? How does time fly! I'm getting all nostalgic all of a sudden. *snif*

  6. My parents have a photo of me about 8 years old with an Easter lily I propagated from a potted plant. I have been photo-obsessed longer than garden-obsessed, so I have lots of photos from my 1st garden, clearly displaying all my beginner's mistakes. My favorite old photos are the "before" 1s from my current garden. They remind me how much work I've done (& how much I still have to do).

  7. Carol, this is too funny. I've been contemplating a post about my previous gardens and my limited garden experience. Now is the perfect time to do it.

  8. Carol, my post is up. This has been fun and I hope others will participate.

  9. Ah I remember those days. The first garden and a lot of firsts in learning how to grow plants. Of course every year feels brand new. Watching plants come back up and sinking seeds and plants into soil in late winter through early summer.

  10. What a nice idea to share photos of previous gardens! Unfortunately, I'm new at taking photos. Digital photography opened up a whole new hobby for me. Hahaha! But I look forward to seeing everyone else's.

  11. Carol,

    This is weird, but I have had gardens since the 70's but never considered photographing them much. When digital photography was introduced to me (2000) I started taking pictures but not often. Since I've been blogging, I take pictures of everything along the way.

    I wish I had taken pictures of my first vegetable garden. I tended to it every day and can still remember the fragrance - lined with marigolds. I was so proud.

    Oh, well.

    I see you took a lot of pride in your tiny apartment garden. Cool!

  12. Heather... Yes, why not go all out with your first garden! I would have loved to have had the kind of sharing about gardens that blogs provide when I planted my first garden.

    MSS@Zanthan Gardens... Thank you. Annuals are pretty flowers all grouped together like that, holding each other up.

    Annie in Austin... Don't let B&W pictures hold you back, I would love to even read about your first garden, even without pictures.

    Kylee... I already had a lot of experience helping my Dad garden while growing up, plus a hort degree when I planted this first garden. Looking forward to seeing your 4H garden...

    Yolanda Elizabeth... It is fun to see the old garden pictures, but I'd never go back to that small apartment garden.

    Mr. McGregor's Daughter... Since you have pictures of your first garden, you ought to post them for us to see.

    Robin's Nesting Place... Thanks for posting about your first garden. You did an impressive amount of work on it.

    Curtis... So true, every spring the garden is all new again, and like a "first garden" in many ways.

    Dirty Knees... Yes, I also take a lot more pictures of my garden now with a digital camera than with a film camera.

    Mary... I did enjoy that garden and since it was by a sidewalk that people used to walk around in the evening, I could sit on the patio and just soak up all the nice comments people made while passing by. It was good for my gardening ego.

    I hope to see posts about some of your first gardens sometime on your blogs. Thanks for all the nice comments!

    Carol at May Dreams Gardens

  13. I've been working on the Master Gardener newsletter, so I'm hopelessly behind in posting. I'll try to at least put up some links because I have old posts with pictures from previous gardens. Thanks for sharing yours.

  14. Geez, another idea for a post and I don't think I've gotten around to an earlier idea you suggested (and now I can't remember what it was!).

    You did very well in an apartment garden! No wonder you needed more room.

  15. I have the photos, but they aren't digital. I have to wait until my husband gets back from his business trip to help me with the scanning. Of course, this assumes I can find the photos...

  16. OldRoses... I look forward to seeing pictures of your old gardens. Take your time, as these kind of posts aren't 'time-sensitive' anyway, like Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day on the 15th of the month...hint, reminder, hint.

    LostRoses... I know, I know. So many good ideas all over the garden blogosphere for future posts. I have to keep a list! I can't remember my own ideas, either. I just keep writing. And I always love your comments.

    Mr. McGregor's Daughter... Start looking for the photos now! I'd love to see your first gardens.

    Thanks for the comments!
    Carol at May Dreams Gardens

  17. Oh Carol, you really stirred up some fond memories of prior gardens. My first real garden is at a home where my sister now lives and gardens.

    It has been fun to watch how she took my footprint in her garden and has changed the types of flowers and expanded some and eliminated other flower beds.

    She is a veggie gardener too.
    I gave her my old garden journals so she would know what I planted where.

    Memories... Lisa at Greenbow

  18. I love seeing everyone's first gardens. Makes me realize that everyone was a newbie once. My garden that I have now is my first garden -- I knew nothing about plants and frankly didn't care until we bought a house with a garden and I felt compelled to take care of it. After 3 summers, I can't imagine it any other way now.


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