Sunday, April 14, 2013

April in the Garden

For a long time I have loved the idea of growing as much of our food as possible. And I have loved picking it, and eating it and preserving it.

 Red onions - the seedlings were from someone Mac works with - there's a group of them who share surplus seedlings and produce.
 
 I uncovered the rhubarb from its covering of pumpkin leaves but.....
 
...... under the rhubarb leaves were two large pumpkins!
 I cut the mint and lemon balm back because they had gotten rust, and trimmed the thyme - what a sweet job - the scent was divine!
 Best capsicum season I've ever had.
 The pumpkins are everywhere this year; some I planted, some just appeared from the compost.
 A little silverbeet, leeks, and NZ spinach
 A few beetroot, carrots, capsicum, parsley.
 The cucumbers are still producing, and there's a whole bunch more pumpkins in there too. The bare patches have all been sown with a cover crop, and are just waiting for the rain due this week.
The next set of beds: closest - broad beans; next - celery, brassica, a couple of lettuce, peas; and furtherest - a few last tomatoes, capsicum and courgettes; and dried up sweetcorn plants awaiting removal.

However, the sad truth was, I didn't really like the actual gardening part of the process!

Today I spent all day in the garden, sometimes listening to Chris Laidlaw on National Radio (great item on bees), sometimes just working in the quiet. Usually I get bored and fed up after an hour or two, but today, for the first time, I just enjoyed gardening, kneeling on the grass, hands in the soil, clearing weeds, uncovering plants and produce, watching the insects and bird, chatting to the dog, enjoying the sun on my back, and the wonderful feeling of working hard and successfully.

My elbows, wrists, neck and shoulders are aching, despite a soak in the bath and rubbing in pain relieving cream. But I feel great. I think this will be my first winter garden that makes it through the dark days, because I can't bear the thought of not gardening for months. I'm so lucky to live somewhere that I can garden all year round!

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