Among the photo ops at the White House when the Obamas moved in, there was one with Michelle starting a kitchen garden. She is a fresh food enthusiast, and her example has been a great one for America.   Can’t imagine our First Lady down on her hands and knees doing any sort of manual labour though, alas and alack.

Here is a heartening story of some people replacing their FRONT yard with veges and they are doing it really well.

This couple has been converting their property from “lawn and other useless plants” to garden and fruit-bearing bushes.

You can see some ‘before’ photos:  (May 2009)

Credit: Modern Crafter

and some from a year later (see more here):

Credit: Modern Crafter

This is mostly a craft blog but you can see that the things they do with their lives are very applicable to our blog as well.

I salute them!

(I am looking forward to our banana tree bearing fruit next May and perhaps our papayas will also grow enormous. Stay reading and you will see pictures of this.)

Yes, purely floral gardens can be ‘food for the soul’ but I see beauty in all kinds of vegetable gardens, from ‘Pete’s Patch’ (Peter Cundall’s garden that he nurtured to beauty before he left the ABC) to little herb pots and random gardens of ranges of tomatoes. One of the best pictures I have of our eldest son is as he stands proudly next to a tomato he grew from a seed.  He was in his late teens at the time and didn’t find gardening at all daggy.

If you are a new gardener, just remember that silverbeet is a winner wheras spinach is difficult.  Tomatoes and most veges thrive in full sun but rocket is very forgiving and will grow well is shade too.  Plant broad beans every year to ripen through winter and sweeten your soil.  Dig them into the garden at the end for excellent compost.

At the very least, bung in a lemon tree, some mint in an old garbage tin sunken into the ground to prevent it spreading, some parsley seeds which you need to soak in hot water before planting, some basil if you can.  And plant rows of tiny lettuces of all varieties, pick them as small as you can and they will keep coming back AND you will always have table greens.  Tiny leafed lettuces are very trendy and expensive, but growing your own is very cheap.

There is NOTHING as delicious as freshly picked produce.  It is worthwhile as an endeavour in so many ways!

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