Well-manicured yards, gardens and porches are staples of any good southern home but they do require a little maintenance. Spring officially began on March 20th but in south Georgia, we get going a little earlier. The azaleas may have already bloomed and gone, but there are still plenty of ways to freshen up your front porch and garden throughout the rest of spring and into summer.
If you have a vegetable garden, you’ve probably already planted your seeds or sprouts for this year, but they may be in need of some tender loving care. My dad planted a vegetable garden every spring, and just after school let out we were enjoying ripe tomatoes, cucumbers, butter-beans, corn and squash. Sometimes in the summer, we’d eat supper outside, and the table would be spread with fresh, crunchy veggies that had just been picked an hour before. There’s something magical about watching your food grow and shopping in your own backyard for produce. Your BLT (that’s bacon, lettuce & tomato for those that don’t know) never tasted so good as when you get the lettuce and tomatoes straight from the backyard.
If you’re behind on your planting or maybe you’re thinking of venturing into the land of container gardening, it’s a great time to head out to your local seed store to pick out your seeds and plants. Liberty County has quite a few places that can help with maintaining your garden, whether you go full vegetable or opt for flowers only. Stacy’s Florist (yep, they’ve got a nursery out back), American Feed & Seed, Tractor Supply and Harris Ace Hardware are some of the ones we’ve frequented. For our military families, Fort Stewart has free garden plots available. These are tilled, 20 x 20-foot garden plots right off the Bits & Bridle Equestrian Club stables. They supply the dirt and you supply the elbow grease, plants and tools. Interested gardeners should call 912-435-8205 to sign up.
Above: Photo of the nursery at Stacy’s Florist. Photo courtesy of Stacy’s Florist.
Don’t worry if you don’t have a green thumb. Local farmers have done the work for you, and you can pick up some local, garden-fresh veggies and fruits at the Hinesville Farmers Market. It’s open each Thursday from 4pm-7pm in Bradwell Park in downtown Hinesville. It’s a great place to bring the family, mix and mingle with your neighbors and pick out some healthy foods.
Above: Photo of a vegetable table at the Hinesville Farmer’s Market. Photo courtesy of the Hinesville Downtown Development Authority.
As far as your porch is concerned, you might as well consider it the second family room for the house, albeit one that’s completely open-air. If you live in South Georgia and have live oak trees dripping with Spanish moss in your yard, you may get quite a few leaves and piles of moss on the porch. Make sure you sweep once or twice a week, then have a seat to enjoy the view and sip some iced tea after your hard work. Ferns help to bring in some lovely greenery and since they typically enjoy a shady setting, the porch is the perfect place. Bonus points if you’re able to hang them. Of course, you need some good seating on your porch and this can range from rocking chairs to hammocks to a classic porch swing. Set a little table by the side with a small arrangement of fresh flowers (Florabell is a nice choice to get these) and you’re good to go.
Above: A Photo of our front porch at the Chamber & CVB Offices.
Once you’ve got your porch gussied up and your garden tended, it’s time to invite over some guests. Who doesn’t love a bit of front porch sittin’ and some fresh food from the garden? Don’t fuss with being too fancy. A good place to sit, a cold beverage, a few snacks and a pleasant breeze are all you need to enjoy some southern hospitality.
-Amanda Scott, Program Coordinator for the Liberty County CVB
The Right Blend Blog is written by two different authors employed by the Liberty County Chamber/CVB. As we are able, we rotate weeks and each write about our individual experiences, opinions and let our writing reflect our personalities and creativity. All content provided on The Right Blend blog is for informational purposes only. The owner of this blog makes no representations as to the accuracy or completeness of any information on this site or found by following any link on this site.