It has been a while since I have shared the goings-on around our plot of dirt. Well, happy to write that she’s faring quite well, thank you very much. Which is surprising since the owner has neglected her on a few more occasions than she would like to admit. Even with the neglect, we have been inundated with fresh vegetables and a few weeds just for good measure. So much so, I have shared with visitors, other gardeners and our vertical neighbours, the vegetables not the weeds.
First to be picked early summer was the big bulbs of beetroot, so yummy eaten raw or baked. Then following was the celery, beans and peas. As you know, bean vines are incredibly generous with the number of beans they produce for most gardeners. Our small patch of green beans grew exponentially. Have you ever gathered what you thought were all the beans in one go? Of course, you have, then with another glance at those vines, you find even more hanging there ready to be picked. How does that happen?
What has grown remarkably well under high temperatures is the spinach which I thought would succumb to my lack of watering and temperatures well over 30 degs. No, it didn’t and has been rewarding us with luscious green leaves for weeks on end. The type of spinach I’m referring to is the perennial spinach. Lovely tossed with tomatoes, red onions, and other assortments of greens that I picked such as parsley, spring onions and chives. To add more crunch to our salads in January are the colourful capsicums they like the spinach are growing well. For the first time, I grew carrots never bothered as they are relatively cheap in the supermarkets and plentiful at the local Farmers Market. So pleased I did as the taste and texture were rewarding.
The biggest surprise was our tomatoes, shot away at the starting line of warmish weather and at the first bump of humid weather they succumbed to mildew. Even with rows of basil to jolly them along. Well, I can’t solely blame the plants as I did get too carried with my planting and packed them in without room for them to breathe and shake off those nasty spores. As all of the garden areas are gardened organically, no sprays are used, which is brilliant for our bodies and Mother Earth. Each of us has various ideas on how to garden, so there lies the problem and the spread of unwanted spores and weed seeds, all part and parcel of a community garden.
There is always an upside to a sad gardening story; mine is that I got to make a tasty green tomato chutney and the few ripe tomatoes from the plot were sliced up and plopped on toast. Not only did I plant tomatoes at the community gardens, but we also had a few plants in pots on our balcony. These did not disappoint, and we had more than ample small tomatoes to toss in those daily salads or to be gobbled up when walking ten paces back to the kitchen.
The Seriously Weird
Best be off on my bike, as there are vegetables to be picked and watering to be done while the sun is still waking up.