– My Recycled Garden –

I’m slightly obsessed with repurposing things… so I suppose it only makes sense that my garden is a home of unloved plants and kitchen scraps. Now, as straggly and unattractive as that might sound, it really is a thing of true beauty.

What originally started as a way to do something productive while my boys played in the yard, and help put some extra food on the table during tight times, has become more of a labor of love and kind of a challenge to see how beautiful I can make my surroundings without spending any extra money.

We eat a lot of fresh fruits and veggies, and living in Florida we have so much sunshine and rain I find I can grow things all year long. This year I got a little more organized and made a raised bed out of cinderblocks that I had seen an idea for on Pinterest.

I love how you can fill the holes in the blocks and use them as little planters. I also reused a piece of the wood decking I removed from the back of the house to make another raised bed.

Look for an upcoming DIY on how to make your own little raised bed garden.

When I first moved into my little home there were 2 orange trees, and a grapefruit tree that I was so happy about. I was later forced to cut down those trees when Florida got hit hard by Citrus Canker and forced everyone to cut their trees down.

My personal tropical oasis is home to Coconut trees, Avocado, Mango, Persian Limes, Variegated Pink Lemons, Meyer Lemons, multiple Pineapple Plants, a Kiwi and a Muscadine Grape Vine.

We also have lots of sweet Long Bananas and some short Finger Bananas, as well as lots and lots of our namesake: Papayas!

Then I have my little raised beds that we plant with kitchen scraps and grow an odd medley of things…most recently cantaloupe, sweet peas, tomatoes, and peppers.

I usually have a pretty big selection of herbs as well as a mix of succulents and flowers to make it all pretty.

I have several friends and clients that know when they are ripping out flowers or plants I’m probably going to want them.

I’ve recently added some beautiful Candy Cane Caladiums, Pink Lady Hibiscus and Maui Ixora to the yard that came to me that way.

Did you know that if you pull up Caladiums after they start to wither and you snip the tops off, knock the dirt off the bulbs and store in a box, you can replant them with the next season, even in Florida?

All of our organic kitchen scraps get tossed into a compost pile to give nutrients to our garden. There is something about this whole process that I really enjoy. It just feels good not to waste. And there is something about eating something you grew yourself that just makes it taste better.

Even if you live in an apartment you can find ways to grow your own food. Put some herbs in a window sill, plant some of those grape tomatoes that got too ripe in a small pot on your balcony.

Another thing that is really easy to grow in a pot is Pineapple. Start buying the whole ones, as the price is usually around the same as the cut fruit, and then just cut the top off an inch or so below the top and place on top of some good sandy dirt in a pot. You’ll be amazed how much enjoyment you get out of watching something grow.

Share with me some of your favorite replantable items in the comments below, I’m always looking for new ideas!