Gardening has always intrigued me since the day my mother bought 11 plants for me on my 11th birthday. She said, “tend to them, show them your love, talk to them and you will feel the happiness as they grow and flourish”. Being a child I was unable to understand all that, but I used to water them religiously. Now I have my own small garden and I do understand what she meant. It makes me happy when I see a plant sprout from a seed I sowed and it is mortifying when a plant wilts.
The latest addition to my terrace garden is a tomato plant and a green chili plant which have recently sprouted from seeds. Though I might not be able to get a product soon; I am pretty sure they will taste heavenly.
There are numerous benefits of growing your own produce.
- Fresh and tasty: those of you who have your own kitchen garden will definitely agree with this. This is mainly because the vegetables are picked just before consuming.
- Better Nutritive Value: growing a vegetable for commercial purpose is very different from the one for personal consumption. The vegetables are picked much prior to their ripening to avoid spoilage. This prevents the veggies from attaining maximum nutrient content. Also home grown ones are organic in nature with no or minimal pesticides.
- Work out and relaxation: gardening is a kind of workout which a person enjoys; the same as dancing. When you water, weed and plough you actually spend good amount of calories. It can be quite soothing to the nerves and few people even equate gardening to meditation.
- Vitamin D and oxygen: while you work out in the sunshine you get ample amount of sunshine vitamin; I mean vitamin D and fresh oxygen from plants.
With open spaces constricting in our households you must be wondering how to have your own kitchen garden. Not to worry, there are numerous veggies that can be grown in pots. Tomato (country variety but don’t forget to plant in deep pots); green chili, wheatgrass, curry patta, ladies finger; mint, spinach, lettuce and coriander (in flat and broad pots), certain climbers like broad beans, bitter gourd (can be directed on to the balcony parapets or grills); spring onions, carrot, radish, peppers to name a few.
Well, I have started my kitchen garden, and guess by this World Kitchen Gardener’s day (celebrated on the 4th Sunday of August) would be enjoying my produce. Am planning to add bitter gourd to my garden after tomatoes and chilies bear fruits. Let’s see if my husband is game for it.