I live in an attached home with limited personal yard space. I bought my home last year. The previous owner filled all the personal yard space and a generous amount of the shared space with native North Florida plants. I am doing my best to keep them alive but the long, wicked cold in January may have caused the demise of several.

Due to back issues, I am limited to how much gardening I can do. I do what I can in the yard, including planting pepper plants and a few ornamentals, but mostly stick to container gardening which is easier on my back.

Vegetable gardening is difficult in Florida unless you are willing to spray pesticides, which I am not, and unless you water constantly in the heat. Other than hot peppers that grow with ease here, I don’t tackle vegetables. A few experiments with container tomatoes were a waste of time and energy although others in this area have great luck with them. I think I work too much and am not home enough to provide the needed attention for vegetables. I do well with herbs, though! Plan to expand my pots of herbs this year. I enjoy having fresh herbs for cooking and my two guinea pigs love to eat them.

For years we lived in a rental home with a large yard but terrible soil. I wasn’t willing to spend lots of money to improve someone else’s land, so I went to container gardening, hanging plants from tree branches and lining the low wall of our carport with pots.

Reading outside here is limited to early spring and late fall. Rest of the year is too hot or too cold and too buggy! We do have a lovely screened porch with a ceiling fan that is comfortable on days over 80 and less than 90. Above 90 degrees, the ceiling fan isn’t enough for prolonged lounging on the porch!

What do you grow, Linda?

I was always a writer but lived in a bookkeeper’s body before I found Medium and broke free — well, almost. Working to work less and write more.

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