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Being a lazy gardener - step one

Gardening seems to be a constant series of actions, but being smart is more important than being energetic. Mental skills are more necessary than fertilizer, tools and seed, at least in the beginning.

Knowledge is most important. Knowing when and how to act keeps you from flailing around and spending time, money and energy unnecessarily.

Patience is next. Enthusiastic clearing of a space larger than you can care for is the beginning of disaster. Do a smaller space well this year and add more next year. Each addition needs time to settle into its role as a fertile, weed-free home for plants. Go slow.

Motivation is key as well. Everyone starts off with enthusiasm and, inevitably, that wanes. Find ways to keep it going, rewards for small victories, time wandering in your garden, appreciating a clump of daffodils or watching a hummingbird. Whatever makes you happy. Enthusiasm is like fire, it need careful tending and feeding with small bits of fuel. Dump too much work on it or fail to build it up after the inevitable set back and you'll end up sitting inside thinking "why bother?"

And yes, there are tricks and techniques to make the work go more easily, but we'll get to those as well.

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