Growing things

There is something deeply joyful about gathering food in that you were responsible (in part!) for growing. But up until recently I wasn’t living in a house big enough for doing things properly in the garden and, of course, there’s always the lack of time as an excuse. More reasonably, I feel that as a renter, I wasn’t too keen on ploughing (!) lots of time into setting up a garden when I wasn’t sure how long I’d be there.

However, I was given a ‘grow your own chillies’ set a few years ago, and so I did – and it was not just easy, but rewarding. You can grow chillies in small pots on a sunny windowsill, and they don’t need a huge amount of care either – in fact, one of the most common problems with chillies is overwatering them.

Right now it’s a lovely time of the year, with trees transformed by their new leaves and flowers popping up everywhere in the woods near where I live. And added to that, to see these new plants poking their way out of the soil and going on their way to becoming potentially big plants with lots of fruit is exciting!

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This year I was given another set of chillies to grow. It’s possible to keep chillies alive over the winter, but not easy and this winter was a bit complex having moved around a lot. But anyway, we’ve got three different types of chillies – from left to right Cayenne, Jalapeno and Scotch Bonnet. I am aware that Scotch Bonnet in particular are very spicy, so that’s rather exciting! Clearly Cayenne aren’t doing so well, but we’ll give it time.

I’ll keep you up to date as to the condition of the chillies as they grow – and what sort of things I use them in. Right now, the plan is potentially for some chilli olive oil.