I have only been living here now for 4 months so I still have the odd surprise plant popping up in my previously terribly neglected garden. When we first looked at this house the owner waved her hand airily at a dry and barren side wall with the comment ‘that is my herb garden’. She might better have described it as her attempt to recreate the moon’s surface on earth. There was a dead chilli plant of one sort or another and a twisted runt of a rosemary plant that looked on the verge of death from lack of moisture. The week I moved in I began on my mission to make this small neglected area into a productive garden.
The soil was water repellent, the kind of water repellent that soil wetter alone is not going to fix so I got the soil wetter, a hose and a trowel and dug that soil over and wet it and dug it over and wet it and dug it over and wet it until it finally gave in and submitted to accepting water and becoming soil instead of dust. I moved the miserable rosemary to a large pot, tossed out the dead chilli and began to plan my next move.
Since my little garden has been established I have had the pleasure of seeing all manner of little seedlings pop their way up and begin to grow in amongst my plants. Mostly little chilli plants that I have yet to identify. The picture shows 2 of them that I potted up along with my chives. They are doing very well and are getting bigger by the day, they have flowered and are producing little fruit. I am so looking forward to seeing what my little mystery fruits develop into once they ripen up.
This is truly one of the greatest pleasures of gardening in my opinion, little mystery plants; it’s like unexpectedly winning a prise for something you didn’t know you were entered in. Then there is the long drawn out waiting period to see if your new addition will amount to anything useful.
Gardeners are not boring people, we are just about finding joy in places that a lot of people don’t bother to look and we are able to define a long term project as exciting as opposed to having to be bowled over by an instant adrenaline rush to get the same satisfaction.