Earlier this week I got round to sowing my first seeds of the year!
A mixture of chilli peppers, sweet peppers, tomatoes, aubergines, and with a mind to photography, a few showy flowers. These are now scattered around various windowsills, above radiators, and on shelves in the airing cupboard. I will be checking them every day for signs of germination!
I am hoping to have learned from mistakes made last year (see The Trials and Tribulations of a First Time Vegetable Grower). This year I want to grow less in quantity, but hopefully improve on quality.
One thing I did learn last year was just how satisfying growing your own food can be. There is something great about thinking “I need some salad leaves and tomatoes tonight”, and being able to stroll down to the greenhouse and pick them.
Even if, taking into consideration all the washing and preparation, it is far more time consuming than buying them prepacked from the local store. And considering all the supplies needed for growing, far more expensive too (though the costs may be much less if you are growing in the ground rather than in containers).
Another good result was that I became more interested in cooking techniques. After all, I needed some way to use up all those courgettes, spring onions, chillies, pak choi, etc., etc. Cooking has never been one of my strong points, but I have now learned how to do some simple but really good pasta dishes and stir fries, using whatever happens to be ready at the time. And they are healthy dishes too.
I will be sowing and growing more throughout the season, and will post regular progress reports (or lack thereof). So if you are interested to see what works, and what doesn’t, watch this space.
If you are also growing food as a beginner, it would be great to hear about your experiences too. And of course if you are an experienced grower we would love to hear your tips and advice!