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Monday, 31 October 2011

Post the Forty-first (in which our heroine scalps her garden)

The Ice-Man cometh.  Winter approaches.  I had my first frosty windscreen of the season yesterday morning.  Although it was 16 degrees and sunny today, so go figure.  Emmet and I had said that we would sort out the garden this weekend.  We'd been saying that for the last eight weekends in a row, mind you, but anyway...

I'm a bit of a bi-polar gardener.  I start the spring in a sowing & planting frenzy.  The excitement grows as I lovingly mist my containers every day, rotating them so they get equal amounts of sunlight, and peaks as the first germinating shoots appear.  Unfortunately, I am, at heart, a terribly impatient person, and it all tends to go downhill from there.  I lose interest as I realise it'll be several more weeks before I can actually eat anything I've planted.  I "forget" to go outside and water the pots in the cold frame.  Plants wither and die before they really even got going.  I have guilt, but only a little bit.  The solution, I have found, is to grow stuff that either gives you a pretty-much instant reward, or can be ignored altogether until it's ready to harvest.  So, herbs, salad leaves and root veg, pretty much.  The one exception I'll make is for chilies.  They take a bit more tlc, but I grow them every year because, as we all know, I'm addicted.

Anyway, yesterday we pulled all the root veg from the raised bed in the front garden.  We (well, Emmet, actually) also removed all the gone-to-seed spinach, little gem, endive and lollo rosso.  So now I'm looking at two empty beds and wondering if there's anything else I can plant and leave there for the winter.

Here's the haul, by the way.  I know it doesn't look like much, but it was my first time to do either leeks or carrots, so I'm happy enough.  We're going to have the first of them tonight in beef pot pies.

I also have rosemary, thyme, sage, dill, oregano and asparagus.  Don't ask me what the hell I was thinking with the asparagus, cause it takes three bleedin' years just to be ready for eating.  Mine will be three next year, and I can't wait to get my chops around it.  Oh, and I've two strawberry plants too, but seeing as I've yet to get even a single scabby fruit off either of them, I don't really count them.

Anyway, it's a bit late now, but in the spring, do have a go at planting something yourself.  Nothing quite gives you the smug factor like taking something from your own garden and eating it.

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