Spring has always been my favourite time of the year. Winter is over, daylight is getting longer and after being patient for almost 4 months, I can, finally, take the tools out of the shed! Autumn is always a crucial time to clear the garden of dead leaves, to prep the soil for the next season, to scarify the lawn and to give the edge a trim. I recommend to read this article, “Gardening jobs for Autumn” it will help you to organise your garden with 10 tips before the hibernation season starts.
It’s always a personal satisfaction to see everything growing slowly, where you left it and to see that actually with some care and maintenance gardening is fun!
Last year, we planted strawberry, raspberry, mint and nasturtium and I am so pleased to see them again this year. This year, they are looking stronger, bigger and finally, we are going to be able to taste the first fruits soon!
With Peter, we have been working on beetroots, radishes, shallots, garlic and tomatoes. We sowed in different flower pots, garlic, shallots and tomatoes. Not the seeds but the actual vegetables. At room temperature, a bulb of garlic will start to germinate and to develop a sprout after a couple of weeks. Same will happen with the shallots and onions. They are still in the soil and they are growing nicely. We saved a couple of cherry tomatoes and we squeezed them to release the seeds in a flower pot. After 3 weeks in the greenhouse where the temperature is almost constant and warm the seeds gave birth to a plant. Don’t buy tomatoes seeds!
Beetroots and radishes have been my favourite to see growing. After 3 weeks in the soil, you can start enjoying some of the first radishes with salt and butter, that’s how we do in France! Tasty, crunchy and colourful, it’s always a joy to have them in place during spring time. With the beetroots, when the first plants start to appear, move them from the pot to the soil. They need space and water, so water them quiet often.
The lavender is getting ready, and we will have a few bags in the wardrobe soon. Smelling Lavender is like being in Provence but we are in England. A fresh fragrance of happiness in your home.
Finally, I have discovered that mint can actually grow back from a stalk left in water. What happened? As usual, when you pick fresh mint in the garden, you always cut a stalk or two to compliment a salad or even to make a mint tea. Anyway, to keep the mint alive, you generally put it in a glass of water. After a few days without taking any mint from the stalk I realised that roots were appearing at the bottom of the glass (see picture). After looking on the web, I have found that you can actually regrow some of your favourite scraps like leeks, spring onions, cabbage, little gem, bok choy, mint, coriander and basil. So, with a bit of patience and green fingers, you can grow your own favourite crops.