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May 10th, 2009
11:26 PM ET

Jacqui's "Recession Garden"

From CNN Meteorologist Jacqui Jeras:

It’s been a few weeks since Master Gardener Walter Reeves helped me plant a "recession" garden. So far it has been fun; more so than I would have imagined. The kids and I check it every morning. The strawberries took off right away and I have harvested about 20 nice berries! They would have cost me about $4 at the grocery store. The problem is that birds and rabbits are starting to nibble, and I’ve lost about six good berries. Walter suggested putting up a fence and bird netting. I had to go out and buy both, so I’ve added another $15 to my investment. With the help of my husband, we put up a chicken wire fence and made sure to carefully secure the fence to the wood border (that way the critters can’t sneak through the bottom). I will put up the bird netting tomorrow and let you know if it all helps.

Issue No. 2 (and I hate to complain!) is that it has rained nearly every day. The tomatoes look a little wilted and there is some kind of mold growing in the soil. In the coming weeks, we will consult Walter and do a piece on troubleshooting in the garden. E-mail me ( any topics you may want covered and I’ll try to incorporate some of them into the story.

On a bright note, I’ve picked two bunches of cilantro. I made an awesome mango salsa to top off grilled salmon and gave the other bunch to my photojournalist, Ferre Dollar. And last week I picked some fresh basil and used it for a caprice salad. I only wish I had garden tomatoes to go with it... Give it time!

Filed under: Don Lemon • Sign of the Times
soundoff (7 Responses)
  1. Alisha

    I live in southeastern N.C. on a farm which is covered by a good bit of forested land. There are a lot of edible wild plants growing here. My family and I plan to make use of this free food. I've already made use of wild dewberries and we're happily waiting for the wild blueberries to turn ripe. Have you seen the price of fresh produce in grocery stores lately?

    May 15, 2009 at 9:00 pm |
  2. kate parker

    Let's hope that people continue to garden past the "recession". There are so many reasongs why gardening should become a way of life and not just something people do because of difficult economic times. Perhaps you might consider calling your gardening endeavour something besides "recession gardening". For those of us who have gardened for years, it's tough to see gardening associated with hard times.

    May 16, 2009 at 7:58 pm |
  3. Fred

    Hi Jacqui,
    I really like your garden idea! Maybe you & Fredricka should have a pot luck with the produce from your Victory Gardens! Now I wonder if you can scare the critters away with a sort of scarecrow so that they don't eat all your berries. Our garden here in Toronto is all flowers. I cut the grass mostly.
    Fred from Toronto
    ( Hope you don't have a bad hurricane season this year )

    May 19, 2009 at 3:52 pm |
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