An Itch I Can't Quite Scratch

Sometimes reading books or blogs can be a dangerous activity. They give me ideas. Grand ideas even. The ideas range from the very doable (a homemade pizza craving), to the maybe doable (cheesemaking?) to the not doable at all (a large garden, completely with greenhouse like my grandparents used to have and my uncle still does).

Yep, I'm rereading Kingsolver's Animal, Vegetable, Mineral. How'd you guess?

I have no desire to live completely off the grid or exclusively on local food. (A life without Thai food? Not interested.) I do like to eat lots of local foods when I can. This morning the sun is shining, it's just warm enough to have a front window open and the sunroom is open for the cat. (It is "Piper's Room" after all, though she does have limited access.)

And it's time for me to start thinking about container gardening, again. I wouldn't call last year's attempts a dismal failure but they certainly weren't a success either. The pepper plant was put out of commission by aphids (I still can't figure out where the aphids came from) as was one tomato plant. The remaining two tomato plants grew way larger than they were supposed to (not quite the patio variety they were supposed to be) and though they yielded flowers the flowers promptly dried up and fell off. I did keep the plants alive all summer though, which is progress for me.

Meanwhile I didn't keep the cilantro properly trimmed and it flowered. The basil got attacked by *something*. The lavender turned brown. All this while "indoors" in my sunroom. Go figure.

My lone summer survivor was the rosemary, which while it did not grow large it did manage to hold off  until October. Go Team Rosemary! I have a vague hope that it may come back...but I'm not counting on it.

I ordered seed catalogues and all but drooled over the bounty that I could have...if I had a garden. Patio varieties seem to be few and far between. I contemplated ordering specialty seeds from the US but then decided that I really had no appropriate place to start them.

So once again I'll be at the mercy of local nurseries and big box stores, looking between all the lovely things one could plant if one had a proper garden to find things I can harvest in my little sunroom. I'm hunting down books on container gardens, which sadly seem to be the domain of all things floral, with a few herbs throw in for good measure.

I'm hoping that maybe this summer I'll have a single homegrown tomato. Or maybe enough basil to make pesto. Or I'll keep the cilantro alive until tomatoes and tomatillos come into season. Maybe I'll even do a single container of mint - it's hearty enough to survive my black thumb. I hope.