What Happens to Your Garden When You're Out of Town?

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You've poured countless hours and dollars into your beloved garden, caring for it tenderly every day. But when wanderlust strikes and it's time for you to hit the road, how will your garden grow?

The most prolific gardener I know does the following when he travels:

  • A good watering before and after travel (after checking the weather to see if it's necessary, of course)
  • A thorough weeding before and after travel, though a good mulching after the first weeding should negate the need for a second. 
  • An inspection of all plants going to seed, to determine whether to save the seeds for next year or trim them so they don't go to seed. 
  • A valiant attempt to cook/freeze/can all the vegetables he possibly can before leaving. 
  • An announcement to neighbors as to how long he'll be gone and what they should help themselves to in his absence. Being away from home for a week can mean missing — and, heartbreakingly, letting go to waste — an enormous amount of food. Even though his neighbors take him up on it, there's always enough left for him upon his return. 
These steps are simple, but they buy him peace of mind when he's away and ensure a relaxing return home. Do you hire someone to look after your darling garden when you're away, do you just let it do its thing, or do you have tips to share with the rest of us?

(Image: My Great Outdoors: Maxwell & Sara Kate's Big Garden)