Sunday, 15 May 2011

Sunday update

The garden, such as it is at the moment

I'm recently back from a period of time spent mostly at sea. There's very little sustainable about life at sea! Everything you need must be taken with you. It's nice to be home and able to move a little further down the path to self sufficiency.

Because I've been away so much, I've done little gardening, or cooking, around the house in the last month, although I have achieved two things of note: I've managed to enjoy the last of the summer courgettes, a gift from my neighbours. I'm eating the last one tonight to commemorate the end of summer: there was snow on the mountains around my house yesterday. The other thing I've achieved is to cook an entire meal on top of the slow-combustion woodburning stove. It's not designed for cooking, but by removing the grates on top I've manged to cook a delicious pot of Mexican fava bean, pasilla chilli soup with coriander and mint.

The one thing I have been doing the few days I've been around is to haunt the garden centres to snap up any plants on sale, as they wind down their summer stock. In this way, I've managed to amass the lush offerings you see in the photo above. I've been focusing on hardy plants that will make it through the winter. So far I've managed to collect, all at half-price or less:

Standard bay tree
Four avocado trees - two bacon, two hass
Two lemon trees - one Meyer, one Lisbon
and lots of herbs.

The rest of the pots you see contain asain stir fry greens, broccolli and leafy salad greens. Plenty for me to graze on. And the odd flowering plant, as they're food for the soul. My bathroom, having a skylight, contains a kaffir lime tree, a curry leaf tree and the non-hardy chilli plants, which have still-ripening chillies. I'm starting to feel like I can make a meal from my garden again.

I'm at the end of my very busy time now, so I'm going to be around more frequently from now on.