The planet is our home; we need to be more responsible. Here's what I do.
Having an allotment or a pot of tomatoes in the corner of the living room is a great way to Grow your Own.
But it’s not just about the produce.
For me there’s other reasons! A whole other harvest!
Number 1: Fresh Air
There’s a lot of good things about getting outside. But I find it fabulous to take in the fresh air. Getting to the plot can be an extra bonus as we like to cycle there if at all possible. There’s no TV and no sofa; just the sky! The chorus of birds in the background is an extra bonus.
Number 2: Exercise
I’ll never be a gym bunny but a garden workout is something I can do for several hours with enthusiasm and commitment.
Taking care not to bend badly is important. But it’s amazing how easily gardening can engage so that the effort sustains.
Number 3: Meeting People
Our allotment has people of many nationalities and cultures. Whether it’s helping someone ring a car breakdown service, fix their water pump or seeking advice about pest control and pruning, there’s always someone to talk to. It’s also fascinating to see the unusual things people grow. If we’re lucky a delicious plateful of something exotic also appears!
And then there’s the garden blogging community too. I’ve already made great connections with people and shared ideas here too.
Number 4: Learning
When we started our plot, I was definitely a ‘buy a new pot plant when the previous one dies’ kind of girl. Now I have additional knowledge about plants, flowers and foods that I didn’t have before. Sharing that learning is great as well. My colleagues and friends often ask about what and how we are growing things. Trying new things and improving on mistakes is significant.
Number 5: Optimism
This is the most important thing for me. Yes, we have disasters and failures but through the gardening year we look forwards. Sometimes to a dead cert like the courgettes for us. Sometimes to a mystery plant that got mislabeled. Sometimes the psychology of this is harvest enough.
I recommend growing things definitely. It’s got so many benefits!
a blog by a multilingual expat-since-birth, linguist, researcher, mum of three, living in the Netherlands and writing about bilingualism, multiculturalism, parenting abroad, international life...