Recently I’ve been watching “The Good Life” not the recent American series, rather the BBC sitcom from the mid 70’s. It was based on a husband and wife who decide to try for a life of self sufficiency in suburban Britain. Of course they run a-foul (or fowl – Ha!) of everything from chickens that won’t lay to disapproving neighbours. It made for great comedy.
Years ago I watched a few episodes (before the days of the PVR so only when I was lucky enough to spot it in the TV Guide….remember that publication?) and I was desperate to have that kind of life. I wanted sheep and chickens and a big garden, real a life in the country. I think I had forgotten how much I yearned for that when it was only a pipe dream. But fast forward a couple of decades and here I am sitting on my dream and not utilizing as I once wanted.
Oh yes we garden, but not as much as we could. The sheep are a bit beyond our reach, but I’m still considering chickens….except for the cat who might consider them a perfect challenge. But I hope this year to roll up my sleeves and expand the good life here at Hedgehog Hill.
The six main raised bed gardens are looking a bit forlorn. we added lots of compost and mulch in the fall and I’m hoping they are in good shape for planting. I have some ideas about extending a small in-ground bed to the front of this photo to add some larger space crops like squashes. another bed is to be converted to more herbs.
Our herb drying was very successful last year and I’ve been loving adding them to cooking all winter. I’m considering branching into teas. Specifically chamomileThe front flower bed is mostly brown but there are a few signs of spring with Daffodils peaking through. they were covered in snow just a week ago.
We planted some garlic in big pots last fall. They seem to have survived the winter. I would still like to find a spot that we can put garlic permanently, but this was a temporary trial.
But most exciting of all are the little sprouting plants in the sun room. It’s been hard to know when to start things as winter has been lingering, but the temptation was too great.
Spring can’t arrive soon enough. I don’t think I’m ready for an off-grid hippy life, but I do long for those tomatoes from last year.
So, did you plant a tea garden? I once had a garden specifically for teas (I don’t drink coffee, but am a tea-aholic!) but now the tea herbs are just incorporated into my potager’s interior border: hyssop, anise hyssop, chamomile, lemon balm, Mandarin orange balm, clove, cinnamon, sweet, and lemon basils, etc. Most of the mints I attempt to keep in pots: orange, spearmint, peppermint, lime and Sweet Pear mints. Lemon verbena and lemon grass and scented geraniums stay in pots to come indoors for winter. I hope you did grow some tea herbs!