Simple Home Year: Food gardening

The avid gardeners among you will be entertained by my hesitant start with The Simple Home Year. Rhonda’s April chapter deals with Food gardening in containers offering a  careful guide on how to get started, one that even novices like me can learn from.


For years Tony has worked our small vegetable garden area, he was the obvious choice because he’s the one with “green fingers”. Until now my gardening skills amounted to looking at seed packets, occasionally dropping a seed into soil, harvesting and telling him when the Gardenate email had arrived.

But skills need to be built so, as the relaunch of the blog and my project for The Simple Home Year occured in April, Food gardening in containers is my first blog Simple Home Year project.

Of course my usual excellent organisational skills evaporated in the face of this. I was scratching to find the seed packets (still not located), the soil for seeds, a decent sowing container for seeds. Finally, having located a commercial seedling punnet and some lettuce seeds (my chosen crop), I whacked a seed in the punnet and hoped for the best.

It grew! I’ve since learned I should have transplanted it a while back which is why it looks so leggy now. But, and this is an important but, I have a germinated seed from which a lettuce should grow if a snail doesn’t eat it or if I don’t forget to water it.

I at least have the knowledge to harden him off a little by gradual increasing his exposure to sunlight before plunging him in a new pot. I think I’ll call him Larry.

I found a spot in the vegetable garden for Larry to grow in a pot and I found a friend for him! It seems we have some volunteer lettuces — see the red one in the background ? — so my little bloke can go in with them and we’ll have successive crops … of a kind.


Lessons learned: before sowing seeds again (it’ll be two this weekend so that it’s a successive crop) I need to locate the seedling mix, a small container and a notebook. The latter will be the beginning of my Garden Journal, a modest start but perhaps the first step in a permaculture garden. Stranger things have happened.

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