I had been sceptical about whether anything would actually grow in my vegetable garden – gardening isn’t exactly my forte and I find myself in a new environment not knowing what I should be doing and when or when anything would be in season. September seemed to be when everyone started planting veggies with enthusiasm so I joined in.  Forget the fact that we had only been in our new place two weeks and that I should have been unpacking.

The boys were set to work with their toy wheelbarrow, piling the weeds from the veggie patch into it and sometimes even managing to trundle them as far as the compost heap (but mainly just throwing them at one another or me).

My eldest son was allowed to choose seeds for planting and I bought some seed trays to plant back ups in case nothing grew in the veggie patch itself.  We planted.  We watered.  We waited. And waited.

Nothing seemed to be happening so I planted another tray of back up seeds and bought a few seedlings that I found at the local community farm.

Then all at once EVERYTHING grew.  I don’t think a single seed can have failed.  We even seem to have a lettuce, a silverbeet and a chilli that we didn’t actually plant, not to mention a rampant passionfruit that seems to be throwing runners all over the place.

Before long I was transferring the seedlings to yoghurt pots and any other vessel I could find and fast running out of space!

Thank goodness for the food swap at Edendale Farm which meets on the last Saturday of every month to swap seedlings, produce and preserves.  I attended my first one today and took a collection of surplus borlotti bean, butter bean, tomato, lettuce, chard, carrot and squash seedlings.

I was the first to arrive but little by little a few people arrived (fewer than normal being an exceptionally cold day) and stayed to chat and swap.  The contributions were all laid out on a trestle table and the participants were then free to choose items on a trust basis.  It is a lovely way to meet new friends and I returned home with a Queensland Blue pumpkin seedling, two climbing cucumbers, a few lemons, a chai tea mix, some silverbeet and some watercress. Oh, and a beautiful bottle of cow manure.

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