As many of you know I have a big garden. Our section is made up of three lots. Most Kiwi gardens are made up of two, so it is slightly bigger than most. Thankfully the folk who built the house had the sense to put it at the top end of the section. As a result we have lovely long slopping garden (yes we live on a hill parallel with the steepest street in the world). I love having so much space and I love that Atlas the Airedale can rollick around. Admittedly not so much when he is gaining speed as he thunders down to the bottom of the garden to sort out a cat or bird, trampling any part of the veggie garden that gets in the way. Good bye courgettes.
There is still a lot of work to go and it is slowly getting there. I routinely weed the same patches and I hope in the coming months to get some momentum on filling gaps so that hopefully next summer it will be less about the weeds and more about the plants.
The veg garden has come a long way from being a pile of rubbish kindly left by the previous owner. It has structure, which I love. One of my favourite things is being about to gaze out over from the kitchen window. It produces food, which I love to collect for dinner if the slugs, aphids and Atlas’s have not gotten to it before me (Yes I have caught him casually chomping on some broccoli before today).
So as a new year started and after visiting my parents over the Christmas break and seeing how stunning my Dad’s veggie garden looked (his comments well is should since he is retired and he has the time to focus on it) I set myself a wee challenge. Of course it is a 21st century slightly hipster challenge but hey this is the world we live in. Dad offered me some sage advice and like most wilful children it takes a few years sometimes before one will admit parents know best (yes I am finally going to get some waterproof pants for when I am on the bike about 20 years after mum suggesting I need some when I was at high school). Anyway back to Dad. He said you need to visit the garden every day to check on it’s progress and he is right. You learn who has set up camp and shouldn’t have (I am on guard at the moment for those damn white butterflies). You can pick the spinach and coriander before it bolts. You can watch it grow.
To encourage this new habit I have taken to taking a photo a day of the garden and putting it on Instagram . I have also been encouraging myself to make sure we are eating what is there. I do sometimes get lazy and feel the 2 minute walk is to far and I can’t be bother washing the lettuce. So I am working on it.
Posting a photo is a good thing for me. I post cause I want to remember the season and how it progressed (so far incredibly slowly due to the wettest summer on record). I post so that I push myself to take better photos (I am a currently using the old iPhone but I have an online photography course that I want to do and I want to move on from the iphone to using the big boy camera). I also post because I think having a garden is important. It teaches you so much about the seasons, where food comes from. I think everyone should have a garden and as I wrote in my first post this year I want to be the change I want to see.