And now we can begin properly.

This is always such an interesting time of year; the summer holidays just keep giving.  I have settled down in my garden office for the 3rd time this year determined to start the year on the right foot, with a calm and steady focus.  And then opportunities for summer fun came along that were too good to say no to.  And so, I have been off having fun.  

Making memories
Long summer days spent on the beach with family are memories that last forever.

But while having fun there have been moments of gardening goodness, where my Mum pickled some of my beetroot with her special recipe – although I did see her computer open to Annabel Langbein, so I don’t imagine for a moment it is an old family secret recipe but rather something delish she stumbled across and uses it so often that she mostly knows it by heart.   I have to say it is delish!   I watched my city nieces pick strawberries and enjoy the pleasures of sun warmed tomatoes of varieties not found in supermarkets.  And I made some kimchi from fresh garden ingredients. There was also plenty more beach and sun time and that is what summer is all about.

Beetroot and Kimchi
I love this time of year when the jars are filling up again! Thanks Mum for pickling the beetroot. I’m looking forward to trying the kimchi, but I suspect I may have made it a little bit spicy!

Hopefully now I can sit down and focus, plan and put things into action for the 2021 garden.  I have purchased a load of notebooks and am not afraid to fill them.  (Often if it is an exceptionally pretty notebook, I don’t want to spoil it with my untidy scrawl!  So, I bought nice looking plain ones!)

Fresh tomatoes
You can’t beat fresh tomatoes!

With STEADY as the word of the year, I am going to tackle the year in pieces.  Long term goals will be broken into bite sized chunks and started now so when I get to the long term days I’m not faced with a mountain.   Medium and short term days will be treated the same, so I don’t find myself stuck all day with one task.  This should make life more interesting. 

I’m pleased with my strawberries – after last seasons near death experience, the plants have recovered and continue to give delish treats!

With the eye on the future, I can work my way back to today.  I have booked a garden group visit for mid spring.  This will help me to keep my eye on the ball for the spring planting, winter garden prep, autumn end of season clean up and late summer cool season starting so everything occurs in good time.   Using my sector system properly to deal with the needs of the 5 groups in the vegie patch will be the key as in a good week this can take less then half an hour a day – unless there is a big task like digging up spuds.

a garden full of potential and hope
I just need to whip around the garden and sort out the holiday chaos and then turn my attention to the top of the stairs… exciting times!

When the system works properly it will free up time, time for a new adventure.  I have great plans.  I want to build a different kind of garden and have a space in mind.  It is one of the only other flat-ish bits of land here that is easily accessible, and I have already built the stairs to reach it.  It runs along behind the garden and in my head, I can see it finished with a million ideas I’m dying to try out.  It will be an exciting journey exploring what exactly is possible to do in this wild west coast environment.  There will probably be failure – there will definitely be failures, but I’m not one to follow instructions so we will just have to see how it goes.  I’m really excited about this shift in focus.   

one of life's challenges
This year is showing its hand early. I am bracing myself for challenges from all sorts of directions, including the weather. This is today. Today is also summer, but it would be hard to tell based on today alone. But that’s ok, the weather does change and the sun will be back!

The vegetable garden will always be at the heart of what I do as it feeds my family and is an expression of my love for them.  However, as teens, they will be looking to fledge the nest soon and I won’t need to grow as much food to fill their bottomless bellies.  And so, I need to find an alternative way to fulfill my gardening yearnings and to be honest I’m always up for taking on a challenging situation. 

New garden spot
This is the new garden spot. It will be a slow and enjoyable process. It could take years, but I wish you could see what I see in my head when I look upon this land!

So here we are at the 3rd attempt for a productive start to exciting new year, and that is ok.  Things don’t go according to plan and as a gardener this lesson was learnt long ago with ungerminated seeds, pest invasions and so many other nefarious things that can occur in a garden.   

Come again soon – exciting times are ahead.

Sarah the Gardener  : o)

4 thoughts on “And now we can begin properly.

  1. haha I have so may notebooks which haven’t been started because they are too pretty to ruin! I’m looking forward to following another year in your garden!

  2. Sarah, I too have many unfilled notebooks laying around. A couple years ago I went digital and still I can’t stay current on entries. I do have a section on my daily diary personal blog that is dedicated to gardening so that seems to be working a little better for me. The New Year here in my Nebraskan world starts with planning the garden for this year’s season. The first seeds to be planted are always onion seeds and that will be around Valentine’s day. It’s the official start of the garden season. Shortly after that will come Bell Peppers and Eggplant. I might try some cabbage again this year for Kraut. After that comes the warm weather stuff tomatoes, cucumbers, and squash. I am planning on potatoes and establishing a new bed of strawberries. Yup, it should be a good year but it always looks better in my mind than in reality.

    Gardeners are always looking for more ways to expand, produce more, or be more efficient. I too have plans to expand, build more structure, and automate more.

    Have a great garden year.

    Nebraska Dave

    1. Hi Dave. It does seem that planning the garden year makes more sense between the seasons. Having to sort out a new year plan in the middle of the growing season is always interesting! It sounds like you have the potential for a great season there. All the best with managing to take notes throughout! : o)

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