I am a novice gardener but the alchemy of turning tiny little seeds into nourishing vegetables has always interested me. As I mentioned in an earlier blog post, we turned the pond we inherited with the house into a vegetable patch and with a bit of reading up and a lot of enthusiasm, I began planting. As the weeds grew and the hot weather required frequent watering, I started to lose some of the positivity I had started out with. Some of the little plants I had planted from the seed trays withered and died, and very few of the seeds I had planted directly in the soil seemed to be coming up. The final straw came when the only plants that had been growing well, the radishes, turned out to be infested with wriggling maggots in otherwise beautiful red roots. I chalked it all up to experience, but couldn't help feeling disappointed.
However, Mother Nature is gracious. Yesterday I discovered the most amazing thing.
The most beautiful courgette I have ever seen. I seems like such a miracle that this has managed to grow despite the fact that its home is a weed ridden, cat poo infested, shady ex-pond. Bullied by a rampant potato plant, tormented by a well meaning but woefully inexperienced gardener and rarely getting so much as a drop of water, somehow this hardy little vegetable has fought its way through. It isn't the only one. I have also discovered that my carrots have a smudge of orange coloured root appearing at the base of their rather excessive greenery and even the beans, whose leaves had been chomped by caterpillars until they looked like green doilies, have manage to produce 3 reasonable sized pods.
To seasoned gardeners and allotment growers, this meagre little crop must seem laughable, but I am delighted. There can be nothing more satisfying than eating produce you have grown yourself. I think I'm hooked.