Easter is definitely a time of new life. I know we can buy daffodils in the shops from early January these days, but it is around Easter time that they really feel appropriate. My lovely team at work presented me with these beautiful mini daffodils for my birthday before I went away, and over the 6 days that we were on holiday they have bloomed and add wonderful Easterly colour to our sitting room.
Now we have a garden I am keen to make the most of it. My courgettes which I wrote about here are blossoming...
My father kindly watered them whilst we were away, and I am just waiting for Mr W to finish digging in the garden to make a bed for them.
Our garden is if I'm honest, a bit of a mess. I had hoped that it would be our project for 2012, but we just don't have the time needed to throw at it (or money, which buys other people's time). We will plod on slowly with it, and in the meantime, I'm focussing on container gardening (courgettes aside). We have a lovely sunny concrete "patio" which was just perfect for the tomatoes last year, so I'm going to extend the number of things that I'll try to grow.
I've already got my tomatoes going, this year I'm doing them from scratch which is quite exciting. Last year my colleague kindly gave me two plants and I hope she has got some spares on standby this year as these look so very fragile. I had to thin them out before we went away and I nearly cried at having to kill some of the baby plants that I'd germinated.
The parsley at the back of this picture is doing rather well too - I think I need to thin it out or put it into a bigger pot?
Mr W took me to the garden centre today. (He must have had some post-birthday-guilt as he took me to the one next to Lakeland and Hobbycraft which proved a little heavy on the credit cards). We bought a strawberry planter - I have grand plans for a strawberry patch like the one that we had in my garden as a child but the ground is not yet ready - it's pink, and it holds 9 strawberry plants (which were conveniently on 3 for 2) and we planted them this morning. We'll need some netting to keep the birds off in due course.
Whilst we were there, I spotted this cute planter of beetroots! I have no idea about beetroots and the instructions that came with it are a bit basic, but I'll keep watering them, keep it in a sunny and sheltered spot and hope for the best (when do you know how to pick them?)
In other, related news, I am very excited to have ordered my first vegetable box from Abel and Cole which will arrive on Tuesday. I know I am very behind the times with this as schemes to have a weekly box of seasonal vegetables delivered must have existed for over a decade now. Mr W and I found trying to eat more healthily on Lent A Good Thing and want to continue if we can. I'm a bit unadventurous in both my cooking and eating and I am hoping that having a random assortment of vegetables each week will inspire me! (Actually, if I'm honest, the reason I chose Abel and Cole rather than a local scheme was partly the midweek delivery day, but mainly the fact that you could specify things which you didn't want included (onions and fennel in my case), but also the fact that they tell you in advance what you will get which appeals to my control and planning side). I absolutely can't wait for my first box to arrive - I may even make a blog feature of it and post about what I get and what I plan to make (and to seek advice from my more seasoned readers who know what to do with a broad bean (because seriously, I don't, at the moment, all I eat is spinach, asparagus, tinned tomatoes and the occasional courgette or bit of brocolli...). Watch this space.