Sowing the Seed

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I’ve been sneaking in and out of our veggie patch of late. I am the first one there when it’s green and bountiful, proudly hosing my tomato plants or picking basil.  Recently I’ve let it go a little bit, alright a lot and the long, hot summer has left it looking bedraggled and neglected. It had become another thing to do, a chore, something to stick on the list.

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I went down there this morning fully intending to wave the white flag and give the plot back so another family could enjoy it.  Max and I started tidying it up, pulling out some of the weeds that had moved in uninvited. Max found a single red tomato, he plucked it and shoved it straight in his gob.

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One of the things I love about the garden is that Max, who scrutinises most vegetables with a suspicious eye, will greedily gobble anything from sprouts to broad beans if he can pick it himself, no questions asked.


For nostalgic purposes I filled up a watering can one last time to give the parched little patch of earth that had served us so well for the past 6 years a final toast. Max snatched it from me as he does and started showering the plants with some H2o love. He then proceeded to squelch, stomp, dig and flick the muddy ground until his 3 year old heart was content.


We took some of the decaying veg over to the chicken coop, Max giggled and squealed as the greedy chooks pecked away a whisker from his fingers. “Daddy I love our garden”.  Abort, Abort, Abort! Some things in life you just have to make time for, this little pile of earth that sits in a 8ft x 3ft border has provided our family with food, exercise, friendships and plenty of happy memories.

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I came away feeling relieved that not for the first time Max made me see sense. Here’s hoping it will sow a little seed in him that will grow and grow into something beautiful.


If you ever find yourself with time on your hands in Melbourne, come along to Veg Out in St Kilda, it’s a fantastically vibrant place to have a wonder and little people love it.  Do you have green fingers? What’s in your plot right now?

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  • Sonia from Sonia Styling

    I definitely do not have green fingers, but there’s a little part of me that can’t wait to create a veggie patch in a section of our garden. I’m looking forward to having fresh herbs to add to dinner and of course lemons and limes to add to cocktails…! #happyhourddu

    • daddownunder

      of course lemons and limes Sonia : ) I’ve seen your beautiful garden and I think it could carry off a raised bed, they’re more tidy and in my opinion actually make a bit of a statement – do it, it’s a nice weekend time filler.

  • Chantel

    Is that the one next to Luna park? If so, we happened upon it on our holiday to Melbourne at Chrissy and my four year old spent ages running around the place. So many hidden nooks and crannies of joy :)

    • daddownunder

      It is indeed Chantel, it’s such a great place for big and little kids alike – well done for stumbling across it (much better than luna park ; )

  • Smaggle

    I LOVE gardening. There’s a community garden that just opened up in Fitzroy and we’re thinking of getting a plot.

    • daddownunder

      Do it Smaggle, it’s been great for us, not just the gardening but the people tend to be a bit more interesting than the run of the mill. The chairman at our place is a huge TV and movie star in the states – I’m used to seeing him with his bottom poking out of his jeans, shovelling shit

  • Ellie Scarf

    I once bought a cactus from a fancy stall at the Paddington markets in Sydney. The man told me that if I could keep it alive for 3 months then I could have a real plant, then a pet, and then a kid. The cactus is cactus and luckily there is no entry exam for childbearing…

    I love the idea of a vege garden but suspect I am better loving the idea rather than the reality. And focussing on my strengths. Like fast forwarding ads and pressing play right when the show starts again.

    • daddownunder

      Come on Ellie, don’t undersell yourself. I had an impressive track record in killing house plants but there’s something about growing plants that one day will find a place in your belly that makes it more fun.


    Wonderful – I love home grown creations in the kitchen,
    and growing is such a great activity to share with children…
    Fantastic pictures… we could do with a bit more of that sun here in London!!
    Emma :-)

    • daddownunder

      Don’t worry your sun will come Emma and when it does I’ll be looking with green eyes over your snaps.

  • Aaron

    I really think Devon would be lost without our little garden.

    He makes sure we check the strawberries on a daily basis, and I was lucky if I got any raspberries off our plants. Now he’s discovered the tomatoes… Unfortunately, he’s also discovered some of the non-dibble plants that we’ve got around, so we’ve got to keep a close eye on him, or tummy-aches ensue!

    • daddownunder

      Kids are very good at putting things they shouldn’t in their mouth. “What’s this Daddy?” and before I can answer it’s found its way into his gob. We have nothing as exciting as raspberries or strawberries, I suspect it would be the same situation here if we did

      • Aaron

        We don’t get the “whats this?” question. It just goes into his mouth. Luckily some of the berries have got thorns on them to protect them, and the strawberries have netting to keep the birds out, which slows a little boy down. Growing strawberries is great, as they don’t take up much room, are really easy to grow, and taste great!

  • Julie

    I often joke Jarvis is growing in my garden. He loves it so much.

    • daddownunder

      It’s got to do them good hasn’t it Julie? I can’t wait for a garden to call my own

  • Sonia@ LIfe Love and Hiccups

    I so love this idea of a communal garden. My middle son wants to buy rooftops in the city and his own to rent to people… I say dream big xx

  • Liz @ I Spy Plum Pie

    This is such a lovely post. I grew up with homegrown veggies in abundance (my Poppa in NZ had the most magnificent veggie garden I’ve ever seen!) and now that I’ve just bought my first apartment I am starting to turn the balcony into as productive a space as possible. So far it’s just herbs & a lemon tree but even with just that I can pick fresh herbs each night which is a great start! I can’t wait to be growing more though!