January is the month that I use as a stepping stone for the rest of the year. Kids aren’t at school, office is quiet. This is the month that I started a garden journal and set goals for the year. Where I looked at my veggie patch and said “Sorry, I have neglected you. The months leading up to Christmas have been hectic.”
Herbs are great to have in a neglected veggie patch. Harvesting fresh herbs and adding them to my meals makes me feel like I still have a veggie patch! Oregano, thyme and rosemary are hardy. Thai Basil and Basil self seeds in my garden, so now there are plants everywhere. Lemongrass is grown in a pot so it doesn’t completely take over.
The only herb that is missing from my veggie patch this summer is parsley. Last summer there was plenty of it and I was eating loads of tabbouleh salad. The guinea pigs were also enjoying eating parsley. Then one day after heavy rain, it turned up its toes overnight. I have since found out that parsley doesn’t like waterlogged soil. One tip I read was to grow parsley in pots to avoid this happening. Or grow parsley in a raised mound.
A handful of beans, a few eggplants, a black beauty capsicum, some ceylon spinach and a couple of tomatoes can be harvested even in my neglected veggie patch this month. This will give me the basis of a quick stir fry.
The eggplants are tough plants. They have been the most neglected of all, only surviving on rainfall. Yet they keep on producing – thank you eggplants!
Black beauty capsicums have been a delight to have. Their size is perfect for me. I love their chocolate colour. These plants were grown from seed. Out of twelve seedlings, only these three plants survived. I’m fond of them!
I also started a permaculture course. The course reinforces the importance of observation and working with nature. For example, Perennial plants sub tropical plants that need little water are a must in my veggie patch. This revelation will change the way I garden and the plants I grow.
Through my permaculture course and personal journalling, I have learned that my expectation of what my veggie patch would provide me was unrealistic. My lifestyle means that there is limited time to maintain a huge veggie patch. One solution to this is to downsize the veggie patch. Another solution could be to create an edible forest. More on the edible forest in another post 🙂
The biggest losers this past month were the walking stick kale. The bugs (snails and caterpillars) decimated the kale. This is where the neglect of my veggie patch hurt me the most. These walking stick kale plants were productive. Awesome to have in the patch, as only a couple of big leaves are needed for a stir fry or juice. I feel sad that I let these plants get munched. I feel sad that I didn’t protect ’em. The only option may be to pull them out as I don’t think they will recover. 🙁
There is a quick rundown of what has been happening in my veggie patch this past month. For more regular updates, don’t forget to Like our Facebook page.
WHAT HAVE BEEN YOUR JANUARY HAPPENINGS IN YOUR VEGGIE PATCH? WE WOULD LOVE TO KNOW! PLEASE LET US KNOW IN THE COMMENTS BELOW.