Regularly, I profile one of the very involved and talented members of Flea Market Gardening. These folks are inspirational, talented gardeners and bargain shoppers! You may already recognize their names and photos and the next time you do you can say hello!
Meet Deb Clark
Accidental Country Girl
I am a Canadian from Manitoba transplanted to North Dakota by marriage in 2007. I have 4 children . Two grown who live in Canada , two still at home and a grandson in Canada also . I live on a cattle and small grains farm with my husband and our two youngest children. Now being raised a city slicker did I ever think I would be a farm wife? NEVER! But here I am and in the years of my transition to country life I’ve learned a few things ….
1- Never expect anything to go as planned especially when you are working with cattle.
2- You are on call 24/7 and if you don’t do the work no one will be called in to do it on your behalf and
3- Living on a farm and having hobbies don’t mix well unless its gardening because you would never get anything finished!!
With gardening, though, I have found a balance that works well even if you have to walk away with a moments notice to put escaped cows back in the fence!
I’ve only started gardening really the last couple of years since my 3 year old has been able to toddle along with me . Its for her that I make the choices I do on what to plant in my vegetable containers (yes I said containers) So she and I, like my Mom and I did, can make memories that I hope will also make her smile one day when she thinks back ! I love sharing those memories and ideas with my FMG family and reading about their projects, too.
I can remember as a child going with my Mom and Dad to a garden lot we rented by the bridge in our city. I don’t remember doing a lot of work but I do remember how much I loved eating the fresh peas and radishes and helping my Dad water the garden and Mom stuff jars with cucumbers to make pickles! I lost my Mom in 2008 and ever since then I’ve tried growing one thing or another because I know she’d have liked that and it reminds me of her. And you know what? I like it!! Those memories, especially strong when I smell freshly tilled earth, always bring a smile to my face and a warm feeling to my heart.
Last summer, Deb experimented with growing red potatoes. She filled some ordinary tubs this way, she says, “I took two red ‘tators’ , just the kind you buy in the store, cut em in four and planted them in the bottom of the tub with about 6 inches of potting soil on top. Once the leaves grew to the top of the soil you gradually add the soil ’til they are to the top of the tub and that’s it!” Here is the before and after:
How did I become a Flea Market Garden Junky?
Being on the farm there isn’t a whole lot of things to do for entertainment . I’ve always loved garage sales and flea markets so one day when a girlfriend neighbor suggested we go to one called Junkfest I jumped at the chance to do something fun and since then I’ve been hooked on junk!!!
As I toured the Junkfest I noticed and was amazed by a theme of flowers and greenery planted in the junk and ran with that idea ever since ! My favorite junk is re purposed galvanized containers and farm parts! I have them in my home and in my gardens.
My toddler loves to help me play in the dirt and hide little surprises in amongst the flowers, plants and junk. It really is a joy watching her delight and giggle as our plantings peek out for the first time and then go onto bloom .
The look on her face when something new has occurred is priceless! I have an outdoor privy(non functioning) with a bathtub full of lavender and a sink with a rusted pot of whatever moves me at the time (or lives!) that is fun, but I am especially fond of my 47 Chevy pickup/lawn ornament.
“The hubs thought I was nuts when I asked him to park it on the hill for me to take pics of and its been there ever since! I love to junk it up for the changing seasons in all its rusty no windows left glory! Its faded red n green makes for a perfect background for all my junk, plantings and decor. I think its the most commented piece of junk from my pics shared on the Facebook FMG page!!” Deb tells us.
Deb is an avid photographer and enjoys taking pictures around the farm. She really captures the wide open spaces of her part of North Dakota, the working farm, her children and garden.
Deb says, “I can’t end this without commenting on my Flea Market Gardening family! Thank you, Sue, for keeping such a great community open to all of us and for asking me to write this as I am truly flattered to be included!! The page and the amazingly talented(and quirky!) people I am proud to call friends are the reason that I continue to visit. Nancy and Marie, my Junk Sistas, I am grateful for all you have taught me and for our special bond! Happy Flea Market Gardening!”
Wait a minute! Who’s quirky? Thanks Deb for sharing your farm, family and garden with us. ~~ Sue