Chances are, you’ve faced this common problem: You want to grow a garden, but your husband couldn’t care less.
You feel a chill when you bring up planting potatoes. Blank stares meet you as you discuss the wonder of squash. And seed-saving? Seriously boring.
When it comes to gardening, you hoe a lonely row. But you hoe it anyway, because you know that a good garden could one day make the difference between inconvenience… and starvation. Why can’t he see what’s so obvious to you? Why won’t your husband tear up some of the lawn? Or spend his Saturday with you and help chop through bindweed and shovel manure on the corn patch?
I know how you feel. Not everyone senses the dangerous winds sweeping around the globe. Not everyone is willing to think about what might happen when the grocery stores run out of food.
But you think about it. And you know you need to convince him to get on board. You can’t do all the gardening alone… and if things get bad, you want your husband and children to know how to grow food.
As a person who’s personally converted many non-gardeners into avid enthusiasts… and who’s been convinced by my wife to jump into projects I might not have undertaken, I have some insight for you on how you can get your husband into gardening. Ready? Let’s start manipulating encouraging the good man to get on board! Here’s how to get your husband’s help in the garden!
1. Use Fear As a Motivator
Fear is a powerful motivator. Machiavelli wrote that it’s better to be feared than loved… and if you can’t get your husband to love gardening, you might be able to convince him to fear the alternative. Start dropping casual comments like, “Honey… did you know that one zillion people starved during the economic crash that happened in Greater Tramplestan?” or “Wow, did you see that the Slobmart in Dingleton got sacked after an EBT card screw-up?”
Playing “what if” games is good for you and for your family anyhow. It may be that your husband hasn’t explored the possibilities in his mind. Scenarios like “what if the electricity went off” or “what if the Yellowstone caldera blows up” can help you think through potential doomsdays… and after you do, planting a garden looks like a lot better idea.
Fear is a better motivator than “hey, don’t fresh beans taste great?”
Of course… if fear doesn’t work… it’s time to go for the wallet.
2. Appeal To Common Cents… and Dollars
Gardening can save you money, particularly if you grow expensive things like salads and tomatoes. Though those aren’t necessarily “survival” crops, growing high value vegetables that you regularly eat will free up extra money for the home economy. That’s money you could use to sock away some silver dollars or buy some sacks of rice.
Men often think in concrete rather than emotional terms. Use this to your advantage by finding ways to stretch your income… and include gardening in the list. Some time with a calculator and a notebook might make all the difference in getting your husband on board. I always appreciate my wife’s work to be a “helpmeet” around the house… it’s good for the male soul to know that his partner is interested in saving some of his – or your – hard-earned income.
Of course… if that doesn’t work… there’s another alternative…
3. Wear A Bikini
You don’t have to wear the whole bikini, of course… you can wear a pair of jeans on the bottom if you’re afraid of getting your legs scratched up… but even just a sexy top goes a long way towards convincing a fellow that some time in the garden isn’t such a bad idea.
Don’t tell me this is sexist or chauvinistic or whatever. It’s the truth. Bikinis are a powerful force. Chances are, your husband likes looking at you… or he wouldn’t have married you. I don’t hear about Adam complaining when he was in the garden with Eve… naked.
Seriously… just dressing cute helps. And being pleasant. A nice “Darling, I’d love to spend some time with you… I’m going to garden, wanna help?” goes a long way, especially when it’s said by a gal with an adorable sunhat and a bright smile.
If you’ve got it, flaunt it.
4. Appeal To Health
Maybe you and your husband are carrying too much weight like many Americans. If you commit to eating more fresh produce and less processed carbs from Slobmart, you might also get your husband to jump on board with you. A garden can easily be both a workout and a health food store. If he’s worried about his health… your health… or the health of your children, talk about the value of fresh produce, live and filled with nutrition… as compared to the week-old stuff from the grocery store.
If you commit to ditching a couple items of junk food… and growing a couple good foods in their place… say, trading FatTarts for mulberries… or Diabetes Pieces for cherry tomatoes… you’ll be well on your way. And your good example might bring him along. Especially as you start looking better and better in the aforementioned bikini…
5. Work Hard, Don’t Nag and Hope Guilt Kicks In
So there you are, sweaty and panting, hair disheveled at the end of a long row of sweet potatoes… and your husband walks up to you and says, “How’s it going?”
If your first response is, “FINE, no thanks to you,” you’re going to lose him.
Nobody wants to hang around a sourpuss or get insulted or nagged. Pretend you’re talking to your state governor, not your spouse.
Try something like, “Well, hey there… I was just thinking of how much I missed you!” then kiss him. Or just smile and say, “I’m doing great! I’m not nearly as fast as you are, but I’m sure looking forward to serving these sweet potatoes to the family.”
See what happened there? You’ve appealed to his strength… you’ve focused his mind on providing for the family… and you’ve shown him that you’re great company.
The easy thing is to attack and directly guilt trip someone. That will often backfire. Better to encourage, love, smile and be cheerful… and you’ll attract help. Seriously. Men like to be wanted. We like that you appreciate our strength and we hate it when you tear us down. Chances are, once you get your husband in the garden with you and show off how pleasant you can be, he’ll stick around.
If you can’t get your husband to help in the garden that way, you can always refer back to the EBT failure at Slobmart, while counting the money you saved, in a bikini, while chewing on a homegrown carrot and smiling.
That always works.