Gardening is a relatively recent interest of mine. I used to think it required a green thumb, a big garden, and lots of time so I never thought it was something I could do. I think the catalyst was our trip to Tuscany a few years ago; after 7 days of eating delicious food made from fresh ingredients, The Boy and I returned to England and felt serious Caprese salad withdrawal symptoms.
So we started growing basil in a pot on the windowsill. And then coriander. And parsley. And mint. And then we added some flowers too. It wasn’t always successful; the first year our coriander went to flower before we barely made any curries and the snails had nightly feasts with our basil. What was hugely surprising however, was how much I enjoyed taking care of our plants. It’s an incredible feeling to see them grow and flourish and of course, using our own fresh herbs when cooking is simply amazing.
Last year, we added a couple of pots where we planted meadow flower mixes; these offered a stunning variety of colours and attracted bees and butterflies. They were lovely. All through the spring, summer and early autumn, checking up on our plants every morning was my favourite thing to do and was a daily source of happiness.
Now, with the sun making shy appearances almost every day, I am beginning to think about this year’s garden. While I dream of the day when I will have a proper kitchen garden, a source of fruit, vegetables and flowers, I am happy with the kitchen windowsill version for now. So I’m making lists of the herbs and flowers I want to plant and I’m impatiently waiting for spring to arrive. I can taste the Caprese salad already.