What is an Expert Gardener?

At Peterson Garden Project, our mantra is “learn it by doing it.” Sometimes, in fact, we like our mistakes best. If only because it’s good for a blog post.

Another good way to approach a garden is to remember that the plants know what to do. The gardener is kinda just along for the ride. Keep the weeds at bay, water regularly, talk to them. They’ll do the rest.

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So you don’t have to be an “expert” to get a great garden. But sometimes it’s nice to have one at hand, kinda like when you call your mom the first time you make a pie on your own. You know what you’re doing, and you’ve watched the video a million times, but that extra reassurance from someone you trust is really important, too. You can speak directly to an expert at regular Expert Gardener nights in all the gardens. (You don’t have to be a PGP gardener to come! Anyone is welcome.)

Our experts have both formal and experiential credentials. Several are long time gardeners with a wealth of real life learning in why that tomato turned yellow. Some of the credentials others offer are Master Gardeners from various University Extensions, and Certified Horticulturalists. We’ve got a couple with degrees in Botany, and even a few farmers.

Peterson Garden Project has great info on the We Can Grow It Facebook page, right here on wecangrowit.org and, yes we’ve got those videos for you to watch, not to mention our book.

Expert gardeners will generally recognize the difference between neglect, damage, disease, or pest. They’ll be able to stick their hand in your soil and let you know if it needs some TLC. They’ll know how to prune a tomato and how long it takes for a carrot seed to sprout.

But most of all, they’ll be able to tell you that you’re doing fine.