For those who actually read these somewhat convoluted musings of mine, it may be apparent that I haven’t had a particularly zen time of child rearing. Mostly because I’m rather c**p at dealing with confrontation; which is exactly what it feels like when you’re trying to decipher the frustrated demands of a 21 month old. (As Dr Christopher Green put it, toddlers have “all the activity of an international airport, but the control tower doesn’t work.”) For whilst I adore the very bones of him, and he makes me smile on an hourly basis, there are times when I feel like a duck; calm above the water, paddling wildly beneath.
So it may come as a surprise to learn that I have increased my duty of care this last week to include a few more charges. And whilst they still require the essentials such as feeding and watering, the upside is that there are no nappies to change and no tantrums to be had. Based on previous experience however, the downside is that I stand more chance of inadvertently hastening their demise than I do with my own offspring.
Fear not; no animals will be harmed in the making of this post. I’ve simply been wondering whether the green fingered gene which has made my father somewhat prolific in the vegetable growing department has been successfully handed down. As a kid, pesticide-free carrots, onions and beans pulled straight from the garden were the norm; and the difference in taste, undeniable. Given that I left home over 25 years ago, the only time I can taste that same freshness is when buying organic produce. A trip to a local market last weekend where we bought non-organic fruit turned out to be false economy. It had been picked so early that it was hard and tasteless, with most of it being consigned to the bin. (Not to mention the fact it scares me witless that we use pesticides here in Australia which have been banned elsewhere.)
Since organic fruit and vegetables are more expensive, the thrifty economist in me refuses to throw it away, as I sometimes do with the supermarket equivalent. However, it still makes more sense to try and grow our own than pay someone else to do so.
I’m starting off small to see how things go. Mostly because I don’t want the guilt of vegetable genocide on my hands if it turns out I don’t have green fingers after all. For the time being, I’m lavishing daily attention and encouraging words on a chilli plant, some mint, chard, cos and a few garlic bulbs.
With this in mind, I hope you like my garden themed finds below. My favourites are the ceramic herb markers by Paulova Ceramics, top left. If you love the clean lines of Scandinavian inspired design with a touch of coloured glaze, her beautiful products on Etsy won’t disappoint.
I would love to hear from anyone who is happy to share their experience of starting a veggie garden, tips on natural pest control, getting their children involved, what grows best in our Australian climate etc; for whilst Google is a wonderful tool, feedback in the form of personal experience is so much better!
(For product details, click the blue link under each image.)