Introducing... A Meaningful Garden & CityHippyFarmGirl

Today is an exciting day for Think Big Live Simply - today I bring you the very first post from a new series I'm curating (ooh, that sounds fancy, right?) called A MEANINGFUL GARDEN. The idea for this came to me a few months ago, when this blog was still in it's infancy. Actually, it came to me after writing this post, where I expressed how my garden was alot more to me than growing food to eat, how perhaps the most important aspect of the garden had very little to do with the food at all. I was curious to hear how other people felt about their veggie gardens - and being fortunate enough to be surrounded by so many inspiring people online who also grow gardens, the idea for A MEANINGFUL GARDEN was born.

So, keep an eye out for it in the future - you'll not only get a sneaky peek into the back yards and potted gardens of some other wonderful bloggers and Instagram friends, you might get inspired to plant {or revive!} your own once you read their beautiful words.

Now without further ado, here is the inaugural A MEANINGFUL GARDEN post, by one of my long-time blog crushes and inspiration, a new-time bloggy friend and a woman after my very own heart in all things bread, sustainability and permaculture, Cityhippyfarmgirl {and if you don't follow her on Instagram, you must - or at least check out her fabulous hashtag #supermarketbreadpffft}.

This post made me draw breath - it is simply beautiful and evocative, just like all her posts. Yep, another for your blogroll. Enjoy!


A Tiny Garden

There is a faint smell of the sea on this morning’s breeze. A gentle reminder of the wilds of the ocean here in my tiny potted garden in the middle of the city.

I breathe a little deeper. Taking in the moment.

Hands gently pull out stray grass strands that have found their way into my pots. Tiny caterpillars pulled from their ready made meals and leaves are examined and frowned over.  I don’t have the greenest of thumbs but I do try to make these few small pots work.

In a shared courtyard, with a usually bare small-concreted area, I have a tiny corner of greenery. Over time plants have come and gone; with my current crops seeming to be what works best.  The chillies look after themselves, the blueberry remains hopeful, the rosemary a little straggly, and the cumquat satisfyingly happy.

It’s the cumquat that brings me the most happiness, as this is where I’d planted the precious cargo of my third baby’s placenta. Leaves are often scrutinised and branches gently touched. If a plant could live on love alone, this little one would be doing rather well.

Chocolate mint and alyssum are teamed with the cumquat. With permaculture in mind they were planted alongside her. One to encourage bees. The other to deter pests, lemon balm and regular mint also sit along side. A balance with these two simple herbs that struggle to be maintained, and that I doggedly won’t give up on.

alyssumcityhippyfarmgirl

This summers tomato plants are being trialled again. While I’ve never had much success with them, I can’t help but keep trying. From seed they started on my kitchen windowsill. The warmth and afternoon sun shooting them far quicker than if planted straight to the pot. In the end they have to go out though, out into the wilds of the tiny concrete courtyard where contending with the next door neighbours small baby hands is not always a win-win situation.

tomatocityhippyfarmgirl

A shared courtyard means along with caterpillars having all night fiestas on my plants, I also have to contend with other hands trying to ‘help’. I try to swallow my annoyance, letting my fingers once again, brush against some of the wild greenery of the chocolate mint. I bring my hands up to my face and breathe deeply. A simple pleasure and a gentle reminder of what this tiny potted garden brings to me.  A grounding, a reconnection.

Simple living within a fast city environment is not always easy. However, it’s this tiny space where things get to slow down just a little. A chance for me to stop, study the green of the leaves, marvel at the emerging flowers and breathe just that little bit deeper.

This is my tiny garden.

garden inspectioncityhippyfarmgirl

Cityhippyfarmgirl

For years I thought the only way to live a semi sustainable life, was to live in a house in the country- at the very least a house in the city.

But dreams of a big veggie garden, roaming chooks and using solar panels weren’t coming my way any time soon. We lived in a two bedroom rented unit in the city with three children- what on earth could I do within that kind of setting, towards living a greener life?

Turns out quite a lot...

...A city girl with hippy tendencies and farm girl aspirations… this a blog about trying to live a simple life, city style.