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Year 10

Year 10

Every story has a beginning.

Mine unfolded on September 9, 2010. I had a fun idea: I wanted to start a blog. I took a picture of my summer harvest and wrote my first post.

I told a few friends and my mother-in-law (I also told my own mom, who had no idea what a blog even was), and opened up the comments to anyone who might accidentally stumble upon my little corner of the Internet.

I wrote about anything and everything: seedlings, sunsets, surfing, making potting mix. “Content” was simple back then because I didn’t see it as content, I just wanted to share what made me happy. And if I could get a free pair of garden clogs out of it, hooray!

But exactly one year later, out of the blue, I was awarded “Best Gardening Blog” by Country Living magazine, in a time when blogs were still quirky and novel and something you did as a hobby.

That was when everything changed for me.

(Keep reading to the end for something fun!)

Garden Betty hanging 10 on the edge of a boulder

Never did I think that little passion project could turn into my job, or that 10 years later, I’d still be hustling all things Garden Betty and doing work that I’m absolutely obsessed with — in a good way. I love the unexpected turn that life has taken, and the opportunities my blog has opened up over the years.

In the decade that I’ve been sharing all things gardening, chicken-keeping, cooking, and traveling, I’ve also…

Gotten married, visited 14 countries, written three cookbooks and republished one, gone on a cross-country book tour on the road, had a baby, had another baby, and summited dozens of peaks on foot, chairlifts, or long drives.

I’ve camped all over the American West with a newborn. I’ve brought home six pullets and five chicks. I’ve said goodbye to our pugs. I’ve lived in three different homes and moved to another state where the frost-free growing season is just July and August (for real).

I’ve canned hundreds of jars in my kitchen and cooked countless meals for family, friends, and strangers.

Garden Betty grilling over a fire near a lake in the backcountry

For the past 10 years, this little space has always been where I wanted to spend my time. When I started my blog and gave it a funny name (which I’ll get into in a minute), I didn’t worry about who was going to read my words or like my posts (mostly because I didn’t think anyone would).

I just wanted to write, play in my garden, and practice taking pictures of it.

Somewhere along the way, you joined me in this journey and I’m so glad you did. Your curiosity, kindness, and enthusiasm has pushed me to learn something new every day so I can share it with as many people as possible.

Without you, Garden Betty would not be what it is today.

But about that name… I wanted to blog about my garden. And I wanted to infuse a little personality into the name, so I decided to use a nickname I’d always had in California — Betty — a moniker given to a girl in the skate/surf/snow scene.

Garden Betty. The domain was available, and I bought it that day. No thoughts whatsoever as to branding, trademarks, any of that.

To be honest, if I’d known it was going to turn into a business, I might’ve gone with a different name. But it’s short and catchy and I’ve gotten used to answering to Betty (while also answering lots of interviews about how the name came about).

So, that’s the boring backstory to my blog name!

I’ve rambled on enough. Shall we celebrate?

To thank you for being a part of my story, I’ve got a bundle of cookbooks and a few of my favorite things to give away to two readers. (US residents only, sorry!)

Prize pack featured in Garden Betty's 10-year anniversary giveaway bundle

None of this is sponsored, I bought the items with my own money to support companies I love. There’s a gift card to Gardener’s Supply Company, heirloom seeds from Baker Creek (which accounts for more than half the plants in my garden in any given season), the same exact mug I use every day from United by Blue (perfect for holding a huge amount of coffee, chai, or tea), the best Tellicherry peppercorns from The Reluctant Trading Experiment, and non-toxic sunscreen from Goddess Garden.

These are all things I use almost daily, and I hope you’ll enjoy them too.

Enter your email address in the Rafflecopter form below (which will also sign you up to my email list, if you aren’t already on it) and while you’re here, drop a comment and let me know a favorite tip (or blog post) you’ve learned from Garden Betty that’s stuck with you.

The giveaway ends midnight (Pacific Time) on Thursday, October 1, 2020. Two winners will be chosen at random and emailed the next day.

I appreciate you! Here’s to the next 10 years!

Enter this giveaway

(Note: Mobile users will see a button for the Rafflecopter form above. If you’re reading this post on a phone and have trouble accessing the form, try it on desktop.)

About Author

I'm a plant lover, passionate road-tripper, and cookbook author whose expert advice and bestselling books have been featured in TIME, Outside, HGTV, and Food & Wine. The No-Waste Vegetable Cookbook is my latest book. Garden Betty is where I write about modern homesteading, farm-to-table cooking, and outdoor adventuring—all that encompass a life well-lived outdoors. After all, the secret to a good life is... Read more »