The Love of My Life



The Love of My Life

It’s that time of year. No, not just spring…it’s veggie garden season! While some are getting excited about switching over their wardrobes (which let’s be honest, I am, too!), I’m getting psyched about the prospect of spending prolonged periods of time frolicking…I mean…working in my garden. Fresh air. Fresh veggies. All homegrown. Does it get any better than that? Whether you’re a seasoned veggie gardener, a novice or an aspiring vegetable sower, I’d like to share with you exactly why I love having a backyard garden, and the many benefits that come from it!

A hobby with roots.
My love for gardening started as a child. My parents grew a family garden, and I remember helping my father take care of it. I recall taking turns with my sister bringing food scraps to the compost bins outside (and the scary spiders that I’d find greeting me every now and then, ha!). It was a family endeavor that I remember fondly, and now every time I garden, it reminds me of my childhood and how much love my parents put into it.

 Compulsory slow down.
It’s rare to see anything move fast in a growing garden (other than the odd snake that is).  A lovely reminder for me that nothing I do can speed the process up.  Which I think in turn makes the unveiling even more exciting.  I must watch and weed and feed and eventually the results will be revealed.  After zooming around at work all day long it’s fabulous to just take a deep breath and enjoy the peace.  

Variety is the spice of life.
Having a veggie garden is so special because you can make it any way you want. And when you grow your own produce, you’re not restricted by what’s sold at the supermarket. One major benefit for me: I can grow stuff I miss from New Zealand and our travels! I love growing feijoas, beetroot, edamame, tamarillos, cape gooseberries, and black currants. They all hold a special place in my heart because each distinct flavor brings me right back to my childhood and gives me a taste of home, all without leaving my own backyard.

 You never know what you’re going to get.

The most exciting part of gardening for me, of course, is the result! There’s a fun surprise element to gardening, as each year is completely different. At the end of summer, it’s like opening presents in my backyard. I love how you never know if your carrots grew until you pull them all the way out of the ground. Or how one year we didn’t get enough zucchini, another year we had too much! It’s always a goal of mine to make sure we use everything we plant—no veggies left behind—which often means finding a variety of ways you can prepare the same vegetable. When it came to that extra zucchini, I found ways to incorporate them into our meals and tried them out in different recipes (like this yummy zucchini cake recipe).

Year after year, I’m thankful to enjoy this process and all the goodness that comes from it. For all who are getting their gardening gloves ready, I raise my trowel to you and wish you a prosperous growing season!

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