Posts Tagged ‘Vicarage garden’

It’s our second spring in the Vicarage and this year I am planning vegetables. I’ve been inspired by Alys Fowler and her Edible Garden series on BBC2 (tho’ I’ve not watched as much of it as I’d like due to a lack of tv licence and running out of broadband download). I would like her hair, dresses and funny little dog. And garden, obviously.

Only a few plants were munched by the evil slugs...

So far I have planted masses of seeds in a plastic greenhouse (see pics) and fended off a some evil slugs who had a chomp when the first rain arrived after planting. I have ordered the Vicar about with a spade and he has kindly dug up small parts of a couple of our massive herbaceous borders so I have veggie space. He also planted out the sweet pea plants I succumbed to in the garden centre.

Normally he is the gardener and has managed a couple of allotments in our time in Vicar college and in curacy. Now he is generally too busy to do much gardening and has said that I have to be in charge. This is a new experience for me (in the garden, at least).

Since I’m so bad at housework, gardening has always seemed like an excessive luxury. Why tidy the garden when the house is such a mess? But I’m desperate for home-grown veggies so am attempting to do some growing this year. Hopefully with some help from my husband, who actually enjoys gardening when he’s out there. The kids love it as well, the Queen in particular. She’s in the school ‘EcoClub’ and spends almost every lunchtime gardening in the school’s new allotment.

Waiting in the ‘greenhouse’ for planting out I currently have the following:

  • Sweetcorn
  • Radishes
  • Mixed salad leaves
  • Broad beans
  • Runner beans
  • Sugar snap peas
  • Courgettes
  • Sunflowers
  • Er…I think that’s it just now

Our main veggie space for this season - starting small

Planting out is this weekend’s project. And fighting the slugs. Three little ones climbed into the greenhouse just after planting and sampled a good few of my germinating plants. Evil blighters. We moved the greenhouse out of the long grass and surrounded it with ash from the fire, which seems to have kept them off so far. The advice for planting out is used coffee grounds to keep them off. So I’m tanking myself up on caffeine for Saturday…

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I’m not sure how many people is a crowd, but we did have 15 children in our garden on Saturday afternoon. A sunny day always draws the masses, but after the 20th (I am not exaggerating) ring on the doorbell, I did begin to get a little hysterical.

Thankfully, some of the kids were there with their mums, which meant I was able to sit outside and enjoy a coffee with them and not feel that I had sole supervision responsibility. The bigger kids who were after bike mending spanners did not gain garden admittance. But they rang at least four times.

The trampoline can get a little crowded

The trampoline can get a little crowded

We have the largest garden in the neighbourhood, a trampoline and a monkey swing and sociable kids, so it’s no surprise that they all want to come and play. Folk don’t arrange playdates or invite their children’s friends over for tea in the inner city – the kids seem to arrange the social diaries themselves. If I’m feeling up to it I’ll let most of them in, but I’m feeling a need to reapply my Vicarage and garden entry rules. Am I missing any?

  1. No entry without me seeing you come in.
  2. No entry if my kids are not in the mood.
  3. No entry if I haven’t met your mum/nan/carer (I didn’t apply this rigorously enough yesterday).
  4. You go home when I say.
  5. Shoes off indoors.
  6. Be kind to everyone.
  7. Speak in a way that pleases God.

We want to be hospitable to the local children – we have a hospitable God who invites us to eat at his table, and we want to reflect his character. It’s a challenge for me to be graciously inviting all the time though. And so on Sunday I lacked grace with a doorstep caller. I am praying that I will remember God’s welcome more and more so that I am able to share it in increasing measure.

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