Things are growing! The lettuce and thyme popped up about 2 days ago and the lettuce is really going strong. The thyme is still teeny but visible. Everything else is still just brown cups of dirt. I’ve been watering whenever the top of the dirt is dry, which hasn’t been every day but fairly regularly. In theory the basil should be up too, but it’s still been pretty cold and I guess it likes to be planted outside anyway, so we’ll see.

I also pulled the lavender out of the fridge because I read that it’s not really necessary (although everyone seems to have a different opinion). I also went a little crazy and ordered more seeds since I did more reading about what works well in containers. So this week I should receive radishes, butterhead lettuce, heirloom kale (which was free with the purchase), and mint (sorry, Mom).



Growing things in dirt

Since we moved to our condo last summer, I’ve been thinking about how to grow plants in the tiny outdoor space we have. We have what the realtor called a “sweetheart deck” that wraps around the corner of the space and is the width of a hallway–no adirondack chairs for us. We also have what is effectively a two story mudroom with windows on the south and east sides that gets tons of light and heat in the spring and summer. So I’m going with window boxes! In theory I have space for like 12 of them if I went all out. But since I’ve never grown anything before (I’m not counting that cactus I killed in college), I figured I’d start slow with 2 and see how it goes.

This is obviously a change in direction from the Whole 30 blog but nobody reads this anyway and I definitely need to document what happens for troubleshooting purposes. So until the fall, this is going to be gardening 101 for me. I mentioned to a friend who gardens that I was going to the garden store to by dirt, and she responded, “…we call that soil.” So I’m a newbie for sure.

Here’s what I’m starting with: basil, chives, lavender, lettuce, sage and thyme. I also got seeds for parsley and dill but those had special instructions so I didn’t plant them today. And I forgot to get mint which I definitely want.

# of pots seeds per pot Expected Germination Date Notes/Weird things Thinning



April 21 – April 26 Easy (but recommended to plant outside, whoops) When 2” tall, thin to 1 every 10”



April 26 – May 1 Germinates in the dark (?!) Not necessary



May 7 – May 21 Keep in the fridge for 3 weeks When 1” tall, thin to 1 every 15” – 18”



April 21 – April 26 Sounds finicky. It might be too hot on the back porch When 1/2” tall, thin to 1 every 6”



April 21 – May 1 Can be kept in a pot over the winter… we’ll see how it does outside When 2″ tall, thin to 1 every 12” – 18”



April 26 – May 1 Challenging to start from seed When 1″ tall, thin to 1 every 10”


There are my beautiful cups of dirt. Wish me luck!