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Gardening with Ruby

This is our vegetable garden.I enjoy showing Ruby where our food comes from and she’s also eager to learn all the names of the herbs and vegetables.Seedling trays are a fun way for kids to take part and understand how seeds grow into plants.The process of nurturing plants teaches important life lessons very directly especially patience.You learn that not all things happen instantly and that things don’t always turn out the way you expected them to.The amount of crops I had to pull out are endless or when a fat snail ate your new seedlings,that’s quite frustrating.I’ve given up a few times just to find myself getting my hands dirty the very next day.

You have to feed the soil on a regular basis,I’ve made a big compost pile where all the lawn cuttings,juicer leftovers,coffee grounds,egg shells,rabbit poo ect. go and if you have that up and running your compost expenses are something of the past.I also try to use foliar feed as much as possible especially for the heavy feeders such as broccoli and tomatoes.Tomato plants grow really tall and when they start carrying fruit they need support.I’ve learned the hard lesson with tomatoes,they get diseases easily so it’s better to control it from the start.Companion planting is a great idea for pest control.I planted the tomatoes in wired cages and all of them are surrounded by basil which helps.I use natural insecticides because I want to keep my garden organic as possible otherwise what’s the point?

Starting your own vegetable garden can feel overwhelming at first but just start small.Decide which vegetable and herbs you use the most and invest in that,just make sure your soil is well composted,I use a lot of hay for mulch and it keeps the weeds at bay.Winter is a bit difficult time to start but it’s also great for your greens such as Spinach,rocket,pok choi,lettuce,mustard leaves ect.I’ve read “Jane’s Delicious Garden” before I started our garden,it’s a great way to understand the process.

It’s relaxing and comforting to be outdoors,it reminds me of my childhood where you play until the sun sets and you can smell your neighbour’s lamb chops on the braai.I enjoy putting an earthworm on Ruby’s hand,she doesn’t appreciate it as much.Imagine if every school had a subject that involved vegetable gardening.Kids will be less stressed,it’s educational and healthy.I just think if we want the next generation to care about our beautiful planet, they have to feel a relationship with her.You can buy the seeding trays either from a nursery or places like builders warehouse.

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