Acknowledging your limitations


Yesterday I left the house, went for lunch with my daughter and husband and went for a pootle around the local Antiques centre where I bought 4 nice baskets, I am a sucker for a twee basket to use for picking fruit and veg in. Today I spent an hour in the greenhouse clearing away the tomato plants from last year. Nothing particularly significant about any of that, except yesterday was the first time I’ve left the house since before the New Year, apart from a very quick trip to the supermarket and only about the 3rd time in over a month.

The reason why I’ve barely left the house in the last month or so is because I’ve been really quite poorly. I started with a sore throat, the night of my companies Christmas Do at the start of December. Two lots of antibiotics and a round of steriods later and I’m still unable to walk very far without triggering a coughing fit.

All of this has made me think very hard about the coming season in the garden. I love growing a huge range of different varieties of tomatoes, chillis and peppers. I spend all year looking for interesting new varieties that I’ve not grown before and I’ve found some really special ones for this year, from the amazing Sugar Rush Stripy chilli pepper to the utterly beautiful Black Strawberry tomato

Growing all these varieties inevitably means I have excess plants, in the past I’ve given them away or sold them on Facebook and last year we had a market stall, which meant I deliberately grew alot extra.

It is however quite stressful and trying to juggle all those plants meant I didn’t have room for all the other varieties that produce actual food for my family. I do sometimes wonder why I’m like this, why can’t I just grow a few nice tomato plants and a couple of chillis?

Not only that but there are some big projects planned this year, I’m standing in the City Council elections in May and we are hoping to do renovation work on the house and I need to really work on my fitness and health.

So, after quite a bit of soul-searching, I’ve made a decision. I’m not going to grow the 70 different varieties of tomatoes and 34 types of chilli’s I’d planned to. I’m going to exercise some restraint and try to just grow enough plants that will actually fit in my growing space rather than spend all Summer looking at all the plants I didn’t have room for looking increasingly sorry for themselves. I’m not going to grow for the market and any excess plants I’ll just give away.

I’ll still grow a few of the really special varieties I found but I’ll enjoy the process rather than stressing myself out all the time and I’ll concentrate on growing them well, making sure they are properly fed and watered.

Why am I even writing this? Well it’s to hold myself to account. I know myself well enough that if I don’t, when I start sowing seeds, a hazy red mist will descend and 1/2 hour later I’ve thrown all my good intentions out of the window and not only sown all the seeds I originally intended to sow but atleast 10 varieties more.

Now I’ve got to go through my lists again and ensure that I wittle down the number to a manageable amount, sort out the varieties I’m intending to sow and put the rest away out of sight, so I’m not tempted. I feel pretty silly writing that but I’m like a toddler in a sweet shop otherwise.

Am I the only one like this or do other people struggle with the same issues when it comes to sowing seeds?

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