May in the Garden
I've been gardening for about 15 years and never before have I been quite so grateful for the space that I call my garden and the array of activities I can busy and bury my feet and head in! The morning ritual of walking to the greenhouse barefoot with a coffee in hand, waiting the anticipation of watching little seedlings grow into robust plants and all the pottering and watering has literally kept me grounded and well.
Even before Covid-19, earlier this growing season I decided to grow all my edibles from seed and only take cuttings to grow ornamental plants/flowers. This has been incredibly rewarding and has allowed me to learn new skills and enrich my knowledge in sustainable gardening.
Another growing passion has been herbs. Currently I'm growing mint, oregano, sage, lemon balm, chives, rosemary, thyme(s), coriander, basil(s), flat-leaf parsley and one of my favourites- chamomile. I finally sourced German chamomile seeds and they have taken off really well. My hope is to make my own "tea bar" for both fresh cuppas and also dry herbs for comforting winter brews.
Some new additions to the vegetable patch in the front garden are Florence fennel and a row of cauliflowers interspaced with a row of mixed lettuces. Purple bush-French beans are also taking off, this year I'm hoping for two sowings, another one in August for a hopeful sustained harvest till the frosts arrive.
The back garden has had quite a make-over which surprisingly was inspired by our broken and falling down fence. Funny how a dilapidated structure can inspire change! A new block wall and replacing of old sleeper beds with brick has brought a wonderful robust structure for dedicated veggie planting. Plus the fab wooden planter my father-in-law built, loaded with strawberry plants- I'm super delighted with it all!
The greenhouse this year is as busy as ever with 4 tomato plants; 2 x"Black cherry", "Lidl yellow" and a new variety for me "Banana Legs" are growing away at various different rates. I've also planted a lovely cucumber, 2 aubergines with the grape growing strong in its 8th(?) year. It was also evident from the piled up pots, random cuttings and various compost containers, that it was time to expand the potting space. So a repurposed panel from the back garden was sanded and attached to the old butcher's-block to make a welcome space for more seedlings and easy potting space.
My entire hope for the garden this coming summer is to be able to harvest lots of homegrown vegetables, herbs and fruits, continue learning as I grow and to offer the wildlife, bees and beneficial insects as much food to improve the ecological diversity of this mighty little growing space.
Stay tuned for how the harvests go and for lots of recipes, including a Baked Mung bean Dahl with which we can enjoy all the fresh coriander leaf, various different herbal tea combinations and simple salad dressing ideas for all the delicious greens to come.
In the mean time, stay safe and well and hope you can enjoy some growing time yourself xx