Gardening, Learning and Calling an Expert

I’ve always thought I had a black thumb. Then this past year I started a garden (let me restate that – my husband built a raised bed for me – and then I started the garden). It was a hot summer – and a dry summer – but I was able to make a few things grow – lots of tomato and basil along with a few peas, some spinach and a few pieces of okra.

Thinking that I was an old pro, I decided to get a ‘real’ seed catalog this year and get my planning done now. I was a little overwhelmed when I started looking through the catalog. I started with the tomatoes and was expecting to see a choice of 10 to 12 varieties. Page after page went by – yellow tomatoes, pink tomatoes, orange tomatoes, green tomatoes, even purple! Who knew? All total, there were 227 varieties of tomatoes! So I called my friend Sarah, the real expert, who has been growing things successfully for years. With her help I finally settled on Purple Cherokee Heirloom Tomatoes. It’s taken hours of research, but I’ve also learned about peas (and found out why my peas didn’t look like I expected them to last year), onions, spinach (and found out why it didn’t grow well last year), blueberries, garlic and more.

After having gotten through all of that, I realized that (1) I didn’t know as much as I thought I knew; (2) there’s a lot more to gardening than I thought; and (3) if I had called my expert friend sooner I could have saved myself a bunch of time.

I’m not sure about you, but this seems to be a common experience for me when I’m learning something new. I learn just enough to get in to trouble.

Don’t be afraid to ask for help – whether it’s with your garden or your fundraising program.

In a few short weeks I’ll be launching an 8-week on-line training program called “Growing Your Donors.’ It’s an 8-module program that will walk you through raising your first $25k for your organization.  If you’d like to receive advance information about that program, please visit my sign-up page (the check box for that program is at the bottom of the form).

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