One of the oh-so-domestic things I have gotten into in the last few years is gardening. I had a small selection of herbs on the pack porch of my apartment in 2011. I bought them because I had started to fall in love with cooking – particularly with fresh ingredients. Those herbs and I got on splendidly.
When Kevin and I found the house we live in now, we were thrilled to see a decently sized garden plot in the backyard. Last summer, we spent a good deal of time back there and harvested a pretty successful crop. And we had fun, too! With gardening, Kevin’s love of landscaping and the outdoors meets my love for food and cooking. We have found a wonderful activity to do together; it’s even a productive, delicious, money-saving activity!
After completely ignoring the garden through the entire winter, we were pleasantly surprised to see the return of some perennial herbs this spring. We planted our first spring crops in early April and then finished out with our summer crops in mid-May.
By the time I took these pictures in May, our spring crops were flourishing! In the picture above you can see (left to right) our garlic, shallots, and spinach.
In the middle, we have the herbs. Left to right: rosemary, thyme, chives, oregano, parsley, two basil plants (I adore basil), and mint. The mint and basil look a little pathetic in this picture as they had just spent two days in our kitchen before planting due to a few particularly cold nights. At the top of the picture are our six tomato plants: two big boy and four sugary (grape tomatoes). The one random plant on the left between the tomatoes and the herbs is an onion left from last year. Not sure why it came up this year instead of last with all its friends, but we’re letting it grow.
Down at the end, we have snap peas. Kevin built a beautiful little playground for them to grow on. We looked around quite a bit for a nice, in expensive trellis for them. We could not find anything in our price range, until we got to Lowe’s and they did not have enough of the kind we wanted. Thankfully, the extremely helpful Lowe’s employee suggested building something like this of our own. Turns out it was cheaper than buying even one trellis! We have contemplated adding more butcher twine in case the peas can’t reach the bottom strand or they get to heavy, but have decided to deal with that on an as-needed basis.
We absolutely love our garden. The first thing we do every day after work is go out and look at it together to see how all our little baby plants our doing. We’re like super annoying, coddling, over-protective parents. And you can tell what total city kids we are. Even after all our success last year, we are just as amazed this year that the tiny seeds we plant in the ground turn into things we can eat! We understand agriculture on a scientific level, but in practicality, it still completely amazes us. God really designed an incredible world!
Do you have a garden? What have you had success growing? Any total failures? For us last year, our big failure was green beans. What are your favorite things to eat fresh?