22 Sep 2009

Grow your Own! (Part 2)

From childhood recollection, some of the old folks would use old car tyres (even tractor tyres!) as planters, maybe an aesthetically challenging prospect for some of us but they do the job and are a great recycling alternative! At the end of the day it is really all up to you, so why not let your imagination go wild, gauge what can be achieved with what is to hand, and add a bit of zing to your space with a funky container!

Some cooks/ gardeners fortunate enough to own a piece of land, will go the extra length by combining aesthetics and practicality, growing for instance a handful of pumpkins or a blackcurrant bush amongst a flower bed to add extra visual interest while also catering for their appetite, or enjoy the crop from an apple tree or two blended amongst their decorative surroundings while providing that welcoming dappled light in the Summer months.

Some of us will go one step further with dedicated boundary-defined fruit and veg patches, usually in the back garden, in a sheltered spot. Allotments have also enjoyed popularity in recent years and shed their fuddy-duddy ‘grandad’ image; waiting lists are testament to this revival.

Those of you who quite literally enjoy the fruit of their labour - on a small or grander scale - deserve a special accolade here. The task of growing your own produce may be time-consuming and tiring, and sometimes disheartening when disease, garden pests and unexpected bad weather set in, but is very rewarding indeed when produce reaches the end of its cycle and is ripe for consumption!

I remember as a child growing radishes and tending to a wild peach tree, or more recently growing courgettes. The tender care and pride provide half the pleasure in eating the fruit of our labour!

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