Every now and then I get it into my head to try something. A little project. Lately I've developed a sudden mania for the concept of gardening, and especially for growing my own food. Maybe it's the first twinges of survivalism, brought on by military tensions and too many episodes of Jericho. Maybe it's the adimiration I have for my favourite blogging homo gardening show presenter. Who can say?
I have a paved courtyard, with some small garden beds that are fully planted out, so I've gone for things that I can grow in pots. I like pots anyway, in a decorative sense. I've used blue glazed ceramic pots of various shades and sizes, and they look nice. No muss no fuss.
The other day I planted Italian Parsley (above), Tom Thumb cherry tomatoes (below) and capsicums (bell peppers). Not exactly enough to make me self sufficient, but the start of a salad at least. Next on the agenda is a chilli plant, more herbs and some salad greens.
When friends of mine moved from an apartment with a large sunny balcony to an apartment with only a tiny one, I inherited their cumquat tree (below). I haven't had a bumper crop from it yet, but I've only had it for a little while. It seems to enjoy my courtyard, which is fairly sunny, and even if there isn't much fruit I enjoy it for it's ornamental value as well. I think I have a recipe somewhere for some sort of marmalade or preserve made with cumquats, but they are too bitter to eat as they are.
I've been a bit lazy with looking after my courtyard. Weeding the beds and stuff. Something which I'm trying to get better at of late. When I moved in it was hard to use it in Summer because there was very little shade. I remember eating lunch al fresco with the home owners (friends of mine) once, before I moved in, and baking in the harsh sun. Now it's surrounded by trees and banana palms in my neighbour's garden, so it still gets a lot of sun but there are shady spots to sit.
There is a tree next door which has been chopped back and regrown like a weed over the years, and is responsible for starting to push over my fence, but it drops these tiny star shaped flowers that pave my courtyard. I kind of like it when it does, even though the tree is a pain in my ass.
I'm enjoying watching the stuff I have planted grow. The tomatoes are growing so fast that it's almost visible from one day to the next. Expect lots of excitable posts when the fruit starts to appear.