This summer, my family and I thought it would be a fun idea to start a garden in our backyard. We made a list of the produce we use a lot in the summer and decided to do a salsa-themed garden. Fresh salsa is a staple in our fridge throughout the summer [but how can it not be? It pairs perfectly with chips for a quick midday snack or tops off homemade ~vegetarian~ tacos for dinner] so we thought it would be perfect to have a garden full of all the supplies we need!

In addition to me my mom, my dad and my younger sister, our home also houses three fur babies. Our dogs spend a lot of time outside in the backyard, so our first concern was being able to keep them away from our plants. We decided to build a raised bed to ensure the plants wouldn’t be bothered. My father bought a bunch of cedar wood [cedar is the best wood to use when building raised beds because the natural oils keep it from rotting] and screwed and sealed them together.

Once the beds were assembled, we filled the bottom half of the 3-foot-tall  bed with dirt and the top half with gardening soil. Next, we went to Home Depot to purchase the plants and got down to business; we planted roma tomatoes, jalapeno peppers, poblano peppers and some yellow sweet peppers [we don’t put sweet peppers in our salsa, but they are still a go-to snack in the summer, so we added them anyway]. While at Home Depot, we also bought small planters that sit on the side of our deck for herbs. In the four planters, we planted cilantro, parsley, basil, thyme and rosemary. These herbs are all used very often when cooking, so we thought it would be best to have them all closer to the house on the deck.

Starting this garden has been a fun bonding experience with my family. I loved spending a whole day with them putting this all together. Listening to music, talking about the future and planting was a blast. Now, we all work together to water and tend to it everyday.

It’s been a few weeks since we planted the first seeds and we’re already seeing some growth! The peppers are beginning to sprout and the cilantro is growing tall. I loved the process of putting this garden together and I want to add more. This experience made me so excited to own a house with a yard [or maybe even a farm!] to garden one day!

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