Practising Sustainable Gardening

There were a number of things that contributed to my love of gardening. My grandfather was a gardener who looked after the Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens for many years. He had a backyard garden of note. Every holiday we would spend some time at his house and my cousin and I would help out in the garden. We never left his house without a potted plant of some kind. My favorite was a pale pink gardenia that lived in my sunny bedroom for quite a while. I think I got my love of growing things from him.

Once many moons ago, my younger self also read a book, ‘Blackberry Wine’, by Joanne Harris. In this book an older man befriends a young boy and instills in him a love of growing things and leaves him a legacy as he gets older, a compartmentalised box of seeds, rare seeds of fruit and vegetables that had become redundant as nobody used them any more, wrapped in newspapers. I completely fell in love with this book and with the idea of growing and storing my own seeds in an organic manner for future use.

As many of you who read my blog know, I have for many years been growing my garden in old crates and taking them with me everywhere I go when I move. I have grown things in those crates that you would not believe possible. Now I have a house with a garden and I am thoroughly enjoying it. My best, is the fact that I know exactly what goes into the growing of the plants as I put it in there myself. Later I got my earthworm bin and the rest as they say is history.

It was with great excitement then, that I signed up for Matt Allison’s ‘Dig for Victory’ gardening workshop at the Food and Wine Bloggers Indaba this year. Matt has been very proactive in growing his own food and helping others to do so also. He writes a wonderful Blog with recipes that he makes from food he grows. Matt is also involved with Woolworths in training of growing sustainable organic crops and working with them to create a public awareness. Matt runs his own company called Planting Thoughts. Find out more about Matt on his website http://www.plantingthoughts.com/

The inspiring rooftop garden at The Double Tree Hotel, where we had our practical, is the work of Ben from Urban Gardens.

The inspiring rooftop garden at The Double Tree Hotel, where we had our practical, is the work of Ben from Urban Gardens.

Matt teaching us practical lessons in his gardening workshop, 'Dig for Victory".

Matt teaching us practical lessons in his gardening workshop, ‘Dig for Victory”.

Plants, shrubs and even trees are grown in wooden crates in this garden.

Plants, shrubs and even trees are grown in wooden crates in this garden.

I hope you have enjoyed this article as much as I have enjoyed writing it and that you will look out for more blogposts about Matt’s workshop. Happy sustainable gardening friends, love Sam 😉

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