Wednesday, May 13, 2009


I have been gardening. No, not down the allotment! Gardening in the garden. Yes I have a garden...well, I have a space downstairs with the trailer tent parked on slabs and a playhut and the recycling. And green stuff. Grass, weeds, trees, that sort of thing. I used to like the idea of having a garden. Somewhere to sit out and read and burn sausages and such. Trouble is they're so terribly hard work. You have to do things like cut the grass and plant pretty things. Vegetables are plant them, feed them, weed them a bit then eat them. They don't have to look pretty or the colours match or keep them a certain length.

Anyhow, the grass/jungle was knee high so I got the strimmer out and started hacking my way to the greenhouse. The greenhouse is pretty tidy actually because I cleaned it out at Easter in time for the baby vegetable plants to go out there. Currently I have sweetcorn, six varieties of tomatoes, basil, courgettes and pumpkins growing in there. Nice and organised. It's only a little greenhouse but it was worth every penny my OH spent on it ten years ago. (It was my 40th birthday present.)

I only got half the lawn cut. It's not huge but it undulates around lots of things which have to be moved. The grass is so high I had to strim first, then mow to chop it up. If I can get my act together to cut it again in a few days it will come under control very easily but the problem is cutting grass (a) bores me to tears and (b) hurts my back. Hubby do it? Err, no. Hubby missed out on getting any traditional man genes such as the ones for gardening, DIY or doing the BBQ. In the eleven years we've had this house I do not recall him ever cutting the grass.

Anyway after I did half the lawn I started stripping out weeds from the beds. Most of these are feral geraniums which are trying to take over the entire world so I had to dig them out. I've decided that if my strengths lie in growing vegetables I might as well grow them here as well. I'm going to make a second herb garden, (got herb beds on the allotment) with a few more aromatics and non culinary herbs. There is a bronze fennel there already, survivor of ten years of sporadic weeding. I have potatoes in pots so have planted a mint barrel, chives, borage, oregano and thyme. I've also put in a small strawberry patch and some heartsease.

I've also got four lavender bushes to plant. I've got three apple trees, a pear tree, climbing roses, white lilac and several clematis on the walls. What else? I'm feeling a bit skinflint at present so it's got to be something I can either take cuttings from allotment plants or have in the seed box. Hmm. Two types of lemon balm, garlic chives, coriander, dill and some basic salad leaves? Climbing beans? I know...a blackcurrent bush. I have a self seeded one growing great guns in entirely the wrong place in the allotment. Princess would like that...And a few aggressive flowers. Nasturtiums, Californian Poppies, Poached Egg Plant and Calendulas.

Any other suggestions? Got to be a bit cottagey/food/herbal sort of thing.


Knitlass said...

hmmmmmm. what about rosemary - it seems to grow well in Edinburgh, and raspberries, sage, rhubarb, rocket...? that reminds me, must pull some rhubard for tea.... (runs to garden and raids rhubard patch with abandon)

Knitlass said...

whooops. fingers back to front this afternoon (clearly, not enough cake has been consumed today). I meant RHUBARB!!

Hat said...

Sweet cicely - very attractive leaves and the seeds taste nice and aniseedy when fresh.
Garlic chives make a nice clump of late flowers and are real good do-ers
Babbington leeks and what I think are called Egyptian onions but are known as walking onions in our house because they form a group of bulbils on top of a stalk which flops over and grows another clump nearby.
I have spares of all of the above if you're interested. I also have seeds of crimson flowered broad beans and purple flowered french beans - heritage varieties which I try to keep going.

Thea said...

Do you still have that "how to get the best out of your Louet S-10" document for emailing? I would love, love, love a copy.


Raveller said...

I second the Sweet Cicely and the rhubarb. The Sweet Cicely looks like a fern, but you can pick it and cook it with the rhubarb to reduce acidity. Means you can do with a bit less sugar.