Monday, 8 September 2014

New season of veggie gardening

I've been really quiet on the veggie gardening front because I've been very lazy and neglectful. But, Spring is here and I'm ready for a good season.

Last year I was totally slack and too preoccupied with the course I was doing, FEAT and a dozen other activities that took my attention away from the garden completely. My big gardening downfall was in not watering regularly. I've promised the garden that I'll be more attentive.

On Saturday I got into the veggie bed. I started with clearing out old plants and tidying up what I wanted to keep (two sorrel plants, a spinach plant or two and some flowers).

And then I dug in some compost. For the very first time I used compost from my very own compost heap, which I started last season. Rich and moist and populated with many earthworms. This was immensely satisfying (and back breaking) to dig up and move around the compost.

A neighbour bought me a tray of cherry tomato seedlings for the garden and on Sunday I added a tray of eggplants, baby red cabbage (first time trying cabbage) and red-and-green spinach. I put 'em all in yesterday afternoon. I've got some baby spinach and Asian leafy veg seeds that I'll put in this afternoon. And then it is a matter of waiting and watering and watching.

The other bed I started the year before last is not a good veggie location. Too hot. My tamarillo (tree tomato) trees are there and they're thriving but not much else does.

I've decided to turn the bed into a vygie garden. Vygies are succulents and are very tolerant of heat and they're good ground covers. I've seen them in the Northern Cape and I just love their flowers. I bought a few yesterday - I'll put them in after I've done the compost thing.

The veggie garden is a lovely conversation piece with my neighbours. Even living in close-quarters in a complex some neighbours I seldom see. But, when I'm working this communal garden, they come over to chat.

My one neighbour has a cement bench that she no longer wants in her garden. We're going to move it to a shady spot near the veggie garden. A nice place to sit and read and chill. A new neighbour (she's 74 and works part-time from home) has offered to help with regular watering. Sweet.

Three cheers for a good growing season!

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