I've been interested in gardening organically for a long time. Both my parents are gardeners. When I was growing up my dad grew a lot of the veg we ate and my mum looked after the flower beds. So naturally I hoped we'd grow a lot of our own veg once hubby and I were married, and we have grow some veg with varying success. However, already in my teens I began to develop an interest in what we humans were doing to the environment and started to wonder about the wisdom of throwing chemicals around the garden.
When we moved to this house, nearly 13 years ago, Geoff Hamilton was on the tv presenting a series called 'The Ornamental Kitchen Garden', which was about growing veg organically as well as growing veg amongst the flowers. However, at this stage hubby grew the veg, letting me take care of the flowers, and he didn't think they'd grow properly without a good dose of 'Growmore', a sprinkling of slug pellets and the use of an insecticide whenever he saw something that might threaten his crops. I didn't know much about gardening organically at this stage, I just knew that it meant we should stop using the chemicals he relied on. I had no idea what we could use instead. I'm still no expert either where gardening in general or gardening organically is concerned, but I know more now than I did then.
I think a garden should be a place that helps you feel happy and relaxed, so I try to keep the flower beds looking nice, but I also think that a happy, relaxing garden is one that works with nature, that looks fairly natural and is a garden where birds and other wildlife are at home.
For a long time now I've been itching to try to grow tasty, fresh veg for our table, so in the last few years I've been experimenting with growing a few things such as broad beans, garlic, tomatoes and Autumn planted onions.
I've also got a couple of blueberry bushes, which I'm very pleased with.
Last year we found the weather a bit of a challenge, although it did mean we didn't need to do much watering. So we are ready for another year of trying to grow veg organically and hoping the weather will be more favourable for gardeners and hoping we shall be more successful this year than last.
Here's a glimpse of Loseley organic kitchen garden, which I've found particularly inspiring not least because it is local, but I also happened to know the previous gardener who was very enthusiastic and informative about organic gardening.