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RENTER'S GARDEN

One of the bigger concepts of sustainability is about bringing things back down to a more local level. Shopping local stores, purchasing local goods and produce—these are all habits that benefit and nourish communities. Taking that one step further would be growing your own, where you can.

 

We understand—many of us don’t have yards or even a balcony of which to call our own. Furthermore, many of us rent, and it’s easy to feel daunted by the hesitation of wanting to cultivate something when you might have to pick up and leave. And are you even allowed to? Also, we are busy! How are we supposed to grow our own food, on top of everything else we need to accomplish in the course of a day?

 

Hanging with Lex Weinstein in Encinitas, we had the pleasure of meeting her friends Nikelle Lovas and Sean Stahl, a charming and talented creative duo who just happen to have mastered the above question of whether or not to sink in when it comes to setting (literal) roots.

 

 

For Nikelle and Sean, it was never a question of whether they should or shouldn’t. One gets the impression they could turn blooms in the desert. For them, it’s a matter of principles, and they stand firmly behind the benefits of growing their own.

 

We ducked under trellises of passionfruit to get to the banana peppers and plucked healthy plumes of chard from happy soil. They showed us their compost and worm system that creates bespoke fertilizer and plant food for their garden, then led us to towering kale stalks. Maybe it’s their infectious smiles and warm welcomes into their home. Maybe it’s the produce they gifted us. Honestly, it’s probably their green thumbs, but either way we left super inspired and ready to plant our own gardens, no matter what that looks like. Here are a few starters we found helpful along the way:

 

Start Small

Progress is whatever that looks like for you. Maybe you don’t have access to any outdoors ground space—and that’s okay. Potted herbs like basil or even a small tomato plant can survive indoors as long as it gets plenty of sun. There is no proper picture of what providing for yourself is supposed to look like.

 

 

Stick with the Seasons

Do some research and learn what plants work within your local climate. Most places have certain things that thrive in specific seasons, and the more you work with nature’s built-in clock, the more luck you should have.

 

 

Box It Up

Planter boxes may not seem as exciting as rows and rows of fresh goods growing, but trust us, they are a super achievable and easy way to start your own home garden.

 

Band Together

Research in your area for community gardens. Many cities have them, and not only can you often have your own plot but can also trade off and benefit from what other people in the community are growing. A lot of cities have urban growing spaces as well, that can be anywhere from rooftops to the sides of buildings. Get involved—we assure that you won’t regret it.