Welcome to part 2 of the Small Garden Spaces Series. If you are new to this series you can take a look here to see what it is all about.
Today I am featuring our constantly-changing veggie patch. When Chris was a kid his family grew a lot of their own fruit and vegetables and it is something he really wanted to share with our kids.
In our small garden space we are never going to be able to sustain ourselves with fruit and veggies but we like to grow something edible all year round. This way our kids realise that fruit and vegetables don't just come from the supermarket! We are lucky to have a small terraced section in our garden perfect for growing fruit and veg. Growing edibles in pots is also effective in a small space – try something easy like lettuce and cherry tomatoes (and make sure you use mulch and don't let the pots dry out completely).
|A small terraced section of the garden devoted to fruit, veggies and herbs|
|Strawberries are fun to grow – the kids check each day to see the fruit slowly ripen|
It is fun for all the family to watch something grow, ripen and to be able to pull it off the plant and eat it straight away. We don't use any chemical pesticides so we don't need to worry when the kids eat the fruit directly off the plant. We have all learned the hard way to check the fruit thoroughly for caterpillars BEFORE biting into it.
We change what we grow to suit the season and our various whims. At the moment we have a pineapple plant, passionfruit vine, raspberries, a dwarf peach tree, jalapeno peppers, rosemary, chives and thyme. We are happy to give anything a go even if it is likely to fail. I really wanted to grow carrots, Chris told me they were notoriously difficult but we did it anyway. We grew the tiniest, little deformed carrots you have ever seen – they wouldn't keep one rabbit happy!
|Harvesting our pineapple – it was delicious|
The girls get involved in the planting – sometimes we plant from packet seeds, sometimes from seedlings and sometimes we plant established plants from the local garden nursery. For those new to gardening here are the basic steps to plant a seedling or established plant:
- dig a hole to the appropriate width and height for the plant
- fill the hole with water and allow to drain
- add some compost/worm tailings or fertilizer
- remove the plant from container and gently loosen the roots
- pop the plant in the prepared hole and press the soil down firmly
- place some mulch around the plant to discourage weeds
- give your new plant some water
- Vegetable Gardens for Kids from Growing Raw
- Growing green-fingered kids – an ongoing series from Rainy Day Mum
- How to make a wormery from Nurturestore
- Make a Bean Hut from Paint on the Ceiling
- Green life = Planting time from Kitchen Counter Chronicles
- There is a whole heap of gardening inspiration on the collaborative gardening pinterest board set up by Red Ted Art.
- Making Mini books and garden journals from Red Ted Art (this post is about documenting your growing adventures with kids – our next step)