So, an interview with Kim on growing our own food is the second part of a two part series that we are doing over on Gluttonous Adventures and which we mentioned to you last time. The first interview is here if you didn’t get to read it. I interviewed Pete about his love for growing food and we had a bit of a sticky beak around his veggie garden. Today Pete is interviewing me.
Here it is.
Over to Kim …
Where did your love of growing food come from?
I think it must have stemmed from my mum’s passion for growing food and wholesome eating. I always thought I was a bit deprived as a kid because the people up the road had a massive chest freezer that was stocked full of frozen pizzas and crab sticks and white bread while we ate fresh produce from mum’s veggie garden, home baked bread from hand ground wheat and very little processed food at all. It’s funny looking back because now I choose to eat the way I did when I was growing up and I’ve brought Lew up like that too. Rather then feeling deprived I now feel like my childhood was extra privileged.
As a child though, I had no interest in the garden. None whatsoever. I was too busy mucking around with my horses and reading books and cooking. But I’m sure there must’ve been some subliminal stuff that seeped into my pores and came up to the surface once I owned my first home because eventually the gardening thing did come out. I would’ve been about 25.
What gives you the most satisfaction out of the garden and why?
I’m an impatient person so I often would steer away from plants that take a longer time to get established. Things like: asparagus, rhubarb and berries. But over the past couple of years I’ve tried to fight my impatient streak and I start dedicating time to growing these slower, longer lived plants. I’m really enjoying reaping the rewards. We had our first good crop of asparagus this Spring and last year we got a pretty cool crop of raspberries. I’m excited about this summer’s raspberry crop because the canes have doubled in quantity already!
So what’s one job in the veggie garden that you don’t enjoy?
Well, I know you might think it’s weeding but I do actually quite enjoy it when it’s in an ordered, managed kind of way. The thing I struggle with is things getting out of control in my garden. I tend to avoid the hard labour involved in getting everything back to a nice, controlled order when once it’s all wild and wooly. That’s when I get overwhelmed.
But, luckily for me, I have this lovely man who steps in and helps me restore order and control. (think smiley face with heart eyes here!)
What is your fondest memory in regards to your garden?
The first time I had the confidence to make my own pickles from the excess cucumbers and zucchinis at the end of summer. I had thought about making pickles for a lot of years. I’d spent so much time looking up recipes, reading about it and asking people about their experiences. But, for some reason, I lacked the confidence to just do it. Once I did it I found myself wanting to try more recipes and get my hands stuck into tomato preserving. I’ve never looked back. Opening a jar of preserved tomatoes in the depth of winter, knowing that they have been freshly picked from my own garden the summer before, really makes me feel happy.
Also, growing globe artichokes for the first time and letting them go to seed and seeing the most amazing purple flower spring out of them. So gorgeous.
What is something that you’ve lost in the garden but has taught you something about how to do it better?
Globe artichokes. I knew nothing about growing them. I planted them and then let their heads go too far so that they would no longer have been edible. This did give me one of the prettiest flowers in the veggie garden though, which was so memorable and lovely, but I’d like to have another try at growing them now that I know when they need to be picked. I also think you need to plant quite a few of them to get a nice big, fat jar of marinated artichoke hearts. That’s my goal for next time.
What are you growing right now in the garden?
Leafy greens, scarlet runner beans, brassicas, kale, tomatoes, perennial leeks, asparagus, rhubarb, silver beet, herbs, strawberries, raspberries, thorn less blackberries, boysenberries, silvenberries, roses surround my veggie garden fences. I need to put a lot more in: zuchs, cucumbers, capsicums, eggplant …
Lots of rouge lettuces in my gravel paths. They seem to grow like the Day of The Triffids in the paths!
Well, we hope you’ve enjoyed a bit of a sticky beak into our veggie gardens and our love for growing our own food.
We’d love to hear about your veggie gardens. What is it that you love to grow?