Maintain social distance by gardening

Updated: Apr. 10, 2020 at 9:36 AM CDT
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JACKSON, Mo. (KFVS) - Gardening shops in the Heartland say business is really picking up.

"With everyone staying home, they are finding things to do around the house and a lot of that has to do with the outdoors because the weather," Joe Touchette said, the horticulturist at Plants Plus.

Touchette said now is a great time to garden.

Emily Smith is a college student at the University of Missouri who is spending a lot of time in the garden right now after she was forced to come home for the rest of the semester.

College campuses across the country moved to online classes only as a way to prevent the coronavirus from spreading.

Smith said gardening is helping her process these rather uncertain times.

"Doing something that feels so productive but isn't tied to being inside, isn't tied to just information and knowledge and just being able to work with your hands and produce something... whether that's planting flowers or taking up a new hobby or anything like that, it's just an opportunity to let your mind and your soul have a break is so important and really has just kept me sane," Smith said.

Gardening is an activity that allows you to maintain social distance.

It's also an activity the whole family can enjoy outside.

Smith said she and her mom spend a lot of time tending to a luscious herb garden.

“It’s just so fun to go out like every night before dinner and pick what we need for that meal and always have those available and it just makes the food taste so much better,” Smith said. “There’s just something that is so satisfying about being able to do that and being able to it together is just such a good activity to be able to be outside.”

Here are a few tips for starting a vegetable garden.

  • Plant in a sunny location. The more sunlight they receive, the greater the harvest, the bigger the veggies, and the better the taste.
  • Plant in good soil. A loose, fertile, level, well-drained soil is best.
  • Plant in a stable environment. You need a location that won’t flood, get knocked over, or in a place where pollinators can’t do their job.

Smith said the main objective is to have fun and keep it interesting.

CLICK HERE for a full guide to vegetable gardening from the University of Illinois Extension.

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