Gardeners Need Other Hobbies: Avoiding the Doldrums of Winter

Gardening is one of my favorite hobbies. Our own garden, whose scale is too large to ever adequately capture in just one photo, is a testament to the level of enjoyment we get in cultivating our own food and feeding the bees and butterflies. When we purchased our house, our number one priority was having a yard that would work for a large-scale garden. By the time I get the garden the way I envision it, I’ll likely never want to buy another house.

I can easily spend an hour in the garden without realizing it has passed between weeding, plucking off Japanese beetles or other pests, and watering. The introvert that I am, I even enjoy chatting with my neighbors and the neighborhood’s dog walkers about my garden. I inevitably have someone stop by to ask me how we set things up, even as we’re constantly in the process of tweaking exactly how we’re setting up different elements or expanding others.

The months from late fall until early spring are long, long, long and equally as dark. If I didn’t have other hobbies, I’d probably be 100% stir crazy cooped up in the house all day every day. This stir craziness might be exponentially increased because I telecommute. Instead of clawing at the walls and despairing, I’m busy engaged in and enjoying my other hobbies. I’m certainly writing more (though I hope to continue that trend), but I’m also happily engaged in crafting and creating. I’m knitting, spinning, quilting, and always reading.

Of course, I miss gardening, and the arrival of the seed catalogs was a welcome that I sorely needed to 2017. I might even start planning the expansions to the garden this year soon and begin ordering some seeds and plants. But, in the meantime, it’s about two months before I spend any real time in the garden, and I’m grateful I have interesting and productive hobbies to fill the dark evening hours of winter that I may otherwise endure listless and despondent. I miss the time spent outside in the sunlight.

For my avid gardening readers, what do you do to keep yourself occupied/sane/productive during the doldrums of winter? What changes are you hoping to make in your garden this year?

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