Posted by & filed under Organic Gardening.

I have limited space, and live in an arid environment.  I probably should have started with fewer containers and plants, but they are planted now.  The containers need more attention than I thought because of the heat and low humidity.


So is container gardening possible without multitasking?

This is a question that I have read and heard more of as our lives seem to get busier and busier.  What happened to all of the “Stuff” that is supposed to make our lives easier to manage and free us up?


What does multitasking do to you, and for you, and what is multitasking?

Multitasking is the act of doing multiple things at once. It is often encouraged among office workers and students, because it is believed that multitasking is more efficient than focusing on a single task at once. Numerous studies on multitasking have been carried out, with mixed results. It would appear that in some cases, multitasking can be an effective way to utilize time, while in other cases, like medicine or aviation, the quality of the work suffers as a result of split attention.  You probably do not want your surgeon or your pilot to be multitasking much while they are working.


Is Container Gardening Multitasking possible?


What about the studies that say that the stress from multitasking will cloud your judgement?

Kendra Cherry from Psychology had this to share about multitasking:
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  • Multitasking can reduce productivity by approximately 40-percent according to some researchers.
  • Switching from one task to another makes it difficult to tune out distractions and can cause mental blocks that can slow down your progress.


Take a moment and think about all of the things you are doing right now – obviously you are reading this article, but chances are good that you are also doing several things at once. Perhaps you’re also listening to music, texting a friend, checking your email in another browser tab or playing a computer game.

If you are doing several different things at once, then you may be what researchers refer to as a “heavy multitasker.” And you probably think that you are fairly good at this balancing act. According to a number of different studies, however, you are probably not as effective at multitasking as you think you are.

In the past, many people believed that multitasking was a good way to increase productivity. After all, if you’re working on several different tasks at once, you’re bound to accomplish more, right? Recent research, however, has demonstrated that that switching from one task to the next takes a serious toll on productivity. Multitaskers have more trouble tuning out distractions than people who focus on one task at a time. Also, doing so many different things at once can actually impair cognitive ability.


What the Research on Multitasking Suggests

First, let’s start by defining what we mean when we use the term multitasking. It can mean performing two or more tasks simultaneously, or it can also involve switching back and forth from one thing to another. Multitasking can also involve performing a number of tasks in rapid succession.

In order to determine the impact of multitasking, psychologists asked study participants to switch tasks and then measured how much time was lost by switching. In one study conducted by Robert Rogers and Stephen Monsell, participants were slower when they had to switch tasks than when they repeated the same task.1

Another study conducted in 2001 by Joshua Rubinstein, Jeffrey Evans and David Meyer found that participants lost significant amounts of time as they switched between multiple tasks and lost even more time as the tasks became increasingly complex.


You can read more from Kendra about multitasking and see how it may affect you with container gardening multitasking.


So what does that mean for you and container gardening?

I admit that I am a huge multitasker.  I do too Many things all at once, but I have discovered the secret to container gardening multitasking.  Are you Ready for the secret? Planning and tools to do most of the work.  In some of our larger container gardens, we have used drip

Water systems that have been set up with automatic controls.  It works great for smaller container and Gardens also.


Multitasking does not have to be a struggle, we have all of these tools, my hardest lesson has been to stay organized and only allow a certain amount of time to get things accomplished.  It works great as long as I keep everything Neat, clean and orderly.  So most of the time I am multitasking with everyone else, because as you know,  life happens.  Flow with it and enjoy the journey.


Plan as much as you can, learn to implement tools and get help from other people (outsourcing) but enjoy your family and friends while learning new skills!  So it is possible to be successful with even large amounts of container gardening multitasking!

Life is great, I am blessed everyday to wake up and be able to breath and have clean air and food. Our container garden increases the enjoyment of life even more.


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Chris Downs, the Caretaker

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