I can’t believe that this is my 3rd “From Seed to Feed” post! Well here we are another year and an exciting time as we get to plan our 2022 edible garden. We had a lot of success last year and we grew so many plants for the first time ever in 2021 including Loofah, Sweetcorn, Sweet Potatoes, Marrow, Chillies (many different varieties), Strawberries, and Giant Sunflowers that grew so tall they nearly kissed the fluffy white clouds. We also made lots of delicious recipes from our home grown organic produce: Chilli and Tomato pasta sauce, Orange marmalade, Fig jam, Vegetarian chilli stuffed marrow, Sweet potato, chickpea and red lentil soup and from our eggs our new Hens bless us with daily we make regular batches of Meringues, Lemon curd, Vanilla custard and many delicious cakes. I LOVE my little garden oasis so much, such simple pleasures bring so much joy. I will never ever get bored of the awesome tranquil views and outdoor office in summer time. I adore sitting outside hanging out with my naughty hens, eating Portuguese cakes and breads in moderation, celebrating with family parties and raising a glass of vinho in Vinhó (our village is called Vinhó which is so cool) better than Cansado! I love watching the cute sheep opposite grazing and the sensational sunsets at the end of a day just warm my heart. We are very blessed to live in such a wonderful country with friendly local people. Our compost is also looking epic I think all the bunny and chicken poop helps. Now we have the hard decision of what to plant for 2022.

What are we planting in 2022?

Hubby the chilli mad enthusiast has ordered seeds online and received the following chilli seeds: Big black mamma, Scotch bonnet orange, Ring of fire and Naga white. I am in charge of everything “Tomato” so chose Artisan pink bumblebee tomato seeds and we got send some free samples of Yellow pear and Moneymaker tomato seeds. It’s going to be a colourful event in the Casa Valhal garden this year if everything grows and I can’t wait! I definitely need to plant cabbages and squash for our hens. We are still finalising our seeds for 2022 and deciding what to grow. It’s so tempting to grow huge amounts of crops but I need to be sensible as it’s just the 2 of us so we need to prioritise what we eat regularly but I can’t help myself and always want to try something new. Last year the Loofah were our wild card and we had so much fun growing them for the first time. I need a little self control, something I’m not good at as I’m an all or nothing kind of girl. Some people buy all the shoes, I buy all the seeds and don’t let me loose in a garden centre because I’m like a child in a candy store (ha ha).

Luscious Lemons

When we first relocated here we bought a little lemon tree from the local market. It was small but already had 2 full size lemons on it so it looked promising. We planted it in the top garden but then had to move it to the lower garden when we renovated the old ruin into a chicken coop and decided to get our hens. I didn’t think it would survive the move and the winter frost and there was no sign of any new lemons growing. It got to the point where I thought the bloke at the market who sold us it must have superglued the 2 lemons onto it (ha ha). It certainly wasn’t looking too healthy for a long time but roll on 2 years and it is now thriving. We have about a dozen lemons growing which is fantastic. We are never short of lemons as our neighbour has a huge tree and we can help ourselves whenever we want to but it’s lovely to grow our own. Now where did I put the gin and tonic!

I will update this post regularly with our garden delights. The glory of gardening: hands in the dirt, head in the sun, heart with nature.