The start of my kitchen garden was actually not planned. I received a few tomato plants and I planted them in the garden. I did not do any research on how to grow tomatoes outdoors. Looking back, it’s not surprising that I was not able to harvest a single red tomato that year. My tomato plant only produced a few tiny, green tomatoes. However, I did get a great taste of growing my own vegetables! I was amazed by the fact that such a small seed could grow into something so beautiful: a huge plant full of juicy, red tomatoes. And even more surprisingly, the plant is capable of doing this in only 5 to 6 months. This is where it all started for me, my passion for growing my own fruits and vegetables.
It’s not just a passion, because it actually became a certain lifestyle: spending time in a beautiful environment, growing my own fruits and vegetables and planning what I will be able to harvest when and afterwards cook a delicious meal with it. I write about my own experiences and share this on my blog and on social media. By doing this, I am able to inspire a lot of people to grown their own fruits and vegetables in their own backyard. Without being physically present in my garden all the time, I am being busy with my garden every day, because of all these extra activities. I am not able to visit my kitchen garden every day, because it’s located 10 km away from my home. This is not necessarily a bad thing, but it does mean that I have to plan ahead. However, this is not an issue for me, because I’m actually quite good at that. If you have more difficulties with planning, it’s a good idea to make a to do list. This way, you will make sure you get the most out of your garden. J
So, what do I like the most about my kitchen garden?
I get a lot of inspiration for the new season from watching other gardens and reading books and blogs. To make a plan for your kitchen garden is not only fun to do, but also very important. You’ll have to make a plan for the entire year, because then you only have to follow the plan and you will be able to enjoy it fully. While writing this, I know that you cannot always stick 100% to your plan. You will always come across something, for example in the shop, or you receive a very special plant that absolutely deserves a spot in your garden. For this reason, it’s nice to take this into account while you are making your plan. Consequently, you will always have a free spot in your garden for these ‘late comers’. Using this approach, you will maintain a structured but still spontaneous garden.
My garden is also a very nice place to relax after a hard day’s work. It’s also a way of exercising, because you crouch down a lot or walk around with a wheelbarrow. My garden has a surface area of 80 m2 and I’m working there for approximately 10 hours a week. However, this is also depending on the season. In spring you have to sow a lot, in summer you will make sure that weeds don’t take over your garden, in fall you can harvest and eat your vegetables and in winter you are making plans for the next year. This process is also called a kitchen garden cycle.
During the winter time, you were making a plan and in early spring the time has come to sow your first seeds. At that time, your garden is still a bare field, but this will change soon, because you will notice that in one month it’s already starting to become green. J It’s a lot of fun to see that within time, your drawing will actually come alive.
It’s not very surprising that this is one of my 5 favourite kitchen garden moments. Your hard work will be paid off with a very nice harvest. You will be very proud of your first harvest, because of all the work that you put into it. At that moment, I always do a small dance around the garden! Of course, there will always be things that do not work out the way you planned, but you will learn a lot from this and make sure that it does not happen again. For me, this was true for the tomato plants in my first year.
At this time of the year you are likely to find me in my garden. Not just to work, but also to just to relax and look around. I really love all the green plants and once in a while I will come across a very vibrant colour between the green: a yellow zucchini, a red tomato and berries or one of the many edible flowers that can be found in my garden each year. The flowers also attract a lot of bees and bumblebees. I enjoy to take a seat in the garden and listen to the blackbirds singing and watch the bumblebees and bees fly from flower to flower
This time of the year it’s actually quite nice to clean out your garden. After almost an entire year of working in your garden, a 1,5 month period arrived, in which you do not have to do anything at all. I do have to admit that, after I have cleaned out my garden, I already start to become excited about the next season! To fill this emptiness, I enjoy to read about new techniques and seed varieties. After that, the kitchen garden cycle starts again…..
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