In a perfect world (the one where I don't live abroad that is!) I would live exactly where I live but be surrounded by a couple of acres of land where I could garden to my heart's content, raise a few chickens and even sneak in a couple of sheep and a goat. And a cow. IF I was successful at the goat thing.
But, unfortunately, little farms do not exist in the middle of city neighborhoods or at least they really don't in quite the way I long for. Acres of land aren't suddenly going to spring up around my house--where would be dear neighbors go?--so I've got to get creative.
And creative I've been getting...
This year seemed to be the year of the hanging tomato plant. Everywhere you looked--on the television, at the store, at roadside stands--people were trying to sell variations of the contraption you can hang and grow tomatoes from. Hmmmm....I thought. What else could grow in a hanging pot? I get plenty of sun on my front porch and I have plenty of room to hang pots. I thought about tomatoes and how people stake them with wooden stakes or metal trellises for them to grab onto. It only took a minute to come up with what else likes to 'hold on' to something as it grows.
Turns out my idea IS a very good idea. I didn't need anything fancy. Just a few inexpensive hanging pots from my local nursery, some potting soil, some twine and some seeds. That's it. No fancy things that cost 19.95 plus shipping and handling. Just plain and simple items found pretty much anywhere plants are sold.
At first, I planted very sparingly and even tucked in another non-vegetable-producing flowering plant to help 'disguise' my veggies. But as the beans and peas came in they filled the pots decently and I could see that next year there will be no need to tuck in any other sort of plant. In fact, next year I shall tuck many, many more seeds into each pot. I was fearful of crowding the plants but turns out the beans just spill over the sides of the pot and the peas happily climb over one another before spilling over the sides.
This year was to see if I could grown them in the pots. Next year will be to see how much I can increase my yield. A handful of peas is all I get at one harvesting right now. But the harvest does seem to be extending well so long as I continue to faithfully water my peas and beans.
And besides, a handful of peas was all I needed to toss with this pasta. The lightest hint of an alfredo sauce, fresh cracked black pepper and gently-barely-cooked fresh peas and I had a delicious summer lunch.