What’s growing on our balcony garden

22 Aug

basilI’ve never been excited to work in the garden because I spent a lot of my childhood days at the summer house (“dacha”) working on a field. Summer house in Ukraine and Russia is not your American summer house. It means you go there to work in the garden picking up weeds and collecting apples, berries, cucumbers etc. Usually toilet is outside, no shower etc. I’m sure new houses have all these goods built in, but it was not the case in our case…Next step down the civilization is a village. Village has bigger fields, and our grandparents have 2.5 acres of fields. I am very thankful we don’t have any animals there (my grandparent live there from Spring till Fall, not the full year).

My cousins always seemed to enjoy digging in the grounds and telling me that I should help my grandma better with this. But I just hated it. Especially the outfits you put on when you go to the field – someone’s old clothes and shoes, yuk.

So it is very funny how I like growing herbs now. Last year I started doing this, this year I got better, next year I’ll be the pro

The easiest thing that grows is basil. It grows no matter what like nobody’s business. If I don’t water it for 2-3 days, it doesn’t mind. You add some water – it’s alive again next day. It is really nice to have fresh basil anytime I need it. I use it for hummus mostly.

Then I have arugula. Next year I’ll have more of it, and will plant it properly, so it’s not overcrowded. I use just a couple of leaves at a time. If I needed a bunch, my balcony garden wouldn’t be able to provide that space.

Rosemary. I’ve got it for one recipe, and planted it, but really it has no use in my cooking. My daughter likes to eat it tho. Maybe I’ll skip it next year.

Mint. The best herb ever. It grows no matter what! You should plant it separately from everything. I love how fast it grows leafs back. I use it for vitamin water, and for other cooking. The more leafs you pick, the faster new ones will grow.

Cilantro and Parsley. This year I planted just one of each, but next year these plants will get more attention. Usually you need a lot of them, so when you harvest them, you need to wait 2 weeks for them to grow back. Next year I’ll plant 3-4 bushes of each.



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