Thursday, 6 August 2009

Back to Basics

 I have a new allotment. Well, it is a 15f x 25f bed in a communal plot. I am so looking forward to starting to dig and care for the plants again. I feel like it will atone for a lot that did not go right this year. In August I would usually take time away from home to think about my faith and renew my commitment to it. This year however, that has not been possible. I miss it. Having an new patch of earth to care for might just be the path to a cure. It is a bit late in the year for planting, but that does not stop me making plans for proper winter salads. I have been thinking about what will survive its infancy in the autumn and live to give harvest in the cold, dark winter. 'Dominant' spinach is a winner, it will grow fast and harvest through to January, and 'Red Giant' mustard will make for a tangy salad leaf. It is still possible to grow rocket at this time of year, and it is much less likely to be attacked by bugs. Crinkly leafed lettuces are also in the offing, with 'Black Seeded Simpson' being a winner for the greens, and 'Merveille de Quatre Saisons' conquering the reds. I will put down lamb's lettuce to cover some ground. Okay, so it won't win any chef's awards, but you can harvest its leaves in handfuls and add them to almost anything. I have some 'Red Bor' kale to sow to impress the neighbours with its red frills, and help me pretend to be chinese chef genuis (it makes great crispy fried seaweed). With all that under my belt I am hoping I might be well on my path to redemption.

What on earth is the connection between pilgrimage and allotments I hear you ask? Simple, they both root you in your earthly existence at the same time as showing you the majesty of God.


Sarah Rinehart said...

I wish I was there to see your garden grow and help eat the fruits of your labor. And I hope that planning and planting will give you space to be near God.

I miss you!

Mummy said...

I do so admire this. I know nothing about growing anything except maybe children. It makes me happy though because it means that there is still much more to discover and appreciate about life.


Rita said...

Hi I just discovered your blog and am enjoying reading through it. I will walk my first Camino in September.
My garden is bursting at the seams just when I am busy getting my last things together to start my camino.
I will be sad to miss preserving my tomatoes, pears and many other goodies for winter. But on the other hand my family and friends will love raiding the garden and I will be enjoying my journey across Spain.