Outside in our garden we have two raised flowerbeds. We put them in when Kitty was still a teeny tiny little girl but after that year’s crop of six or so strawberries, a couple of rows of diminutive carrots and a glut of purple sprouting broccoli I’m sorry to say that they became rather neglected.
They had one more hurrah as a cutting garden for tulips and daffodils but since then they’ve been mostly growing grass and baby sycamore trees. I’m not terribly green fingered. Well actually I’m not green fingered at all, and my gardening style can most accurately be described as benign neglect. But I do like the idea of growing a little something to supplement the contents of the kitchen cupboard, and more than that I like the idea of growing something with the girls to give them a sense of where food comes from and just how long it might take to grow.
So on a sunny Thursday afternoon, with Pip snoozing gently in his chair in the doorway we set out to reclaim our veg patch. Suffice to say it was less a question of weeding, and more a sort of removal of turf. In giant chunks. With a spade.
And then we were ready for a little planting. After the miniature carrots, oh and the parsnips that never grew I decided that whatever we were going to grow had to be pretty easy, and had to be something we actually eat. So we’re starting with garlic.
We planted Solent Garlic and some Shakespeare Onions, both chosen from the garden centre pretty much on the basis of their names which I suspect is the gardening equivalent of choosing your car because you want a red one.
The cloves were easy for little fingers to get a grip on and Kitty really enjoyed pushing them into their rows, even if she wasn’t too keen on getting mud on her gardening gloves (they’ve got fairies on and she’s very fond of them) while Elma ran around in circles, gave us hugs and gave the garlic bulbs some very mistrustful stares.
But both of them just loved the watering stage.
It might have been about to pour with rain (again) but they were determined that not an inch of soil would be left dry, just in case.
And I hope that with all that loving care, and if we remember to put the netting on once the first shoots appear and do the occasional bit of weeding, come next summer we might just be eating garlic in everything!