May 19, 2020

Starting our Own Fruits and Vegetables Garden at Home

Gone are the days when gardening is only for old people. Nowadays, a lot of people are getting interested in this hobby especially now that we have a pandemic concern. We are stuck at home and we need something to relieve our stress.

What nice about gardening is you don’t need a big space because you can do container gardening or vertical gardening. You don’t need to buy a lot of materials because you can recycle plastic bottles and cans. (an excuse to buy softdrinks so we can reuse the plastic) You don’t need to buy seedlings because you can start planting from the ingredients that you have in the fridge or pantry.

I can still remember when I was a kid, I wanted to have a home with a garden. I wanted to have my own space where I can grow flowering plants, herbs, and spices. When we moved to our home, my late grandmother used to give me plants and we bought some bluegrass, plants, and even trees in Victoria, Laguna so we can plant it in our small garden.

After a few years, I realized that gardening is not for me. I don’t have the patience to maintain it, I don’t have a green thumb and I feel sad whenever a plant dies. So I give up my dream of having my own herbs and spices that I can use in my kitchen. I stopped gardening and let my husband maintain our small garden.

For the last several years, my husband tried to plant some seeds like tomato but it never blooms, calamansi but it never bears fruits, sitaw that died after 2 or 3 harvests, and camote. Camote was successful because my husband used to harvest the camote tops. He steamed the camote tops and paired it with shrimp paste.

Last year, when my son and I were on our summer trip, my husband decided to chop our palm trees and pine trees. Wala na kami shade pero at least wala na rin nalalaglag na dahon lalo na pag may typhoon. He hired someone to do this. Slowly, he started his home gardening hobby. He removed old soil and rocks, cleaned, and prepared our garden. He started planting and making his own compost. 

After our The Farm at San Benito trip, he planted tarragon, peppermint, and another type of mint plant. Then last holiday, we went to Tagaytay to buy dragon fruit cuttings and poles. When Community Quarantine started he bought this Sinigang Veggie Seeds, the pack includes okra, sitaw, tomato, radish and kangkong. So far, we were able to harvest Kangkong na and use it for Sinigang na Buto-Buto.

I know this is just a small thing compared to other home gardens but I would like to celebrate small wins. At least, may naharvest na rin kahit papano. Gardening takes time but it can relieve stress, it is a good family bonding and you can save money too. My husband spent most of his free time in the garden and when he has a business trip (before lockdown), nireremind pa niya ko na diligan ko halaman niya. Minsan nagseselos na nga ko sa halaman. Hehehe!

"Watching something grow is good for morale. It helps us believe in life" Myron Kaufman

Update: July 2020

After two months, here is the look of our mini garden at home. We've drunk a lot of softdrinks in the past few months so my husband can use it for his plants. Instead of buying expensive pots in the market, we reuse or upcycle the plastic bottles or pots. We already have a metal trellis where we could hang the plants. Aside from the Chinese kangkong, we already harvested pechay, okra and basil.

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