For baby boomers, it's a new time of life phases. The children have moved on, the career has quieted down or disappeared. The suburban homestead remains. What to do? Downsize or keep the space for the visiting of grown children and grandkids?
Suburban lifestyle has become second nature to many after decades of being spoiled by nearby shops, restaurants, but a quieter and less traveled sector of the metropolis.
Moving outdoors and making the yard part of your personal space is a natural progression and many of us born during the eras of having a home garden and being ecology and health-minded from the birth of the "nutrition" era and "clean the earth" campaigns, it's natural that we start gardening. This allows for a sense of independence, something to nurture, physical activity, and healthy food intake.
Let's take a look at the way some suburban gardeners are making use of space.
Things to consider -
Will your HOA allow any plantings out front?
Do you want fruit trees?
Do you need raised beds so you can work more easily?
Do you want to do containers?
Do you have pets?
Are squirrels or deer an issue?
Do you want to attract birds? Flowers like sunflowers, trumpet flowers, lantana and other flowering beauties will bring you hummingbirds, butterflies, and birds.
Do you want to produce goods you can can and save throughout the year?
Do you want nut trees or berry bushes?
Do you want to plant something that could save you if the world went to hell? A moringa tree has a complete protein in the berries, leaves and bark, and can grow in hot and dry climates.
Do you want a simple salad garden? Tomatoes, herbs, peppers, cucumbers, celery, cabbage, kale, and carrots are all good.
Do you want privacy? Consider adding trellises to your fencing/walls around your property. Grow climbers like grapes, passionflower, luffa, and gourds.
Everything you grow will benefit your health, your stamina, your muscles, your flexibility, your mind, and soul.
Are we seeing baby boomers as the next hippie farmers in the suburbs? Hell yes!
At GroovyNewLife, we highly recommend the gardening life. Both Julie and I have home gardens in suburban settings. One way I got past the HOA is in the planter out front, I planted sunflowers. Everyone loves sunflowers, but beneath them I planted melons with big fat leaves and it keeps the soil from drying out, and sneaks some produce out front.
Here's some ways to embrace the lifestyle -
(I have these and love them)
It's a fantastic feeling to work the earth, get some vitamin D, exposure yourself to gut bacteria that helps digestion and mood. There really are no drawbacks other than the ones we create when we become frustrated by a garden pest or aren't patient with the process.
Just remember, a sunflower seed becomes a sunflower! Nature does the hard stuff!