During the whole “Chiberia” we had throughout the winter, we watched A LOT of tv. Okay, a lot of YouTube. After watching every movie and documentary I’ve ever thought I needed to see, I finally turned to thinking Spring and about my garden. I’ve always had some sort of small garden, whether it was on our balcony or in a community plot, but since we’ve moved and have our own space to grow, I see our garden as a responsibility to turn the land into a source for a very good chunk of space dedicated to growing a lot of our food. I decided that I really needed to learn how to design it and plan for the future of it, something I wasn’t ever able to do before. I want to incorporate veggies with flowers to continue attracting all of the beautiful and fuzzy honeybees I saw buzzing around our yard last summer and to keep it completely organic. So, I decided to study up- and I’m so glad I found these four BBC programs, which I admit to watching over and over again for inspiration and education. If you’re learning to garden, you just might want to check them out. There’s so much to learn!
The Edible Garden (with Alys Fowler)
I wasn’t keen on this series the first time I turned it on, as I felt it was a bit somber but after plugging away I realized how incredibly realistic Alys Fowler is about the ups and downs of trying to grow food organically in a small, urban space with that lovely London weather. She gets upset when her plants die after the back-breaking work of tending to them and is incredibly disappointed by the rainy summertime weather that isn’t what she had in mind when it came to enjoying her beautiful garden. Isn’t that what we all go through? Gardening is about patience, trial and error and embracing all of the emotions the natural beauty of a garden brings us.
Life in a Cottage Garden (with Carol Klein)
Even if you don’t grow flowers, I suggest you not dismiss this series. Carol Klein is a seasoned gardener with an enormous flower garden in Devonshire and in this program she does go into all of the latin names for plants and all of the quirks each one requires to grow successfully, but the most valuable thing she provides, in my opinion, is teaching us how and when to grow plants as well as how to propagate them- very important if you want to grow a garden on a budget as it’s essential to learn how to grow things from cuttings and from seed. It’s turned out to be my most favorite of all four-plus I love all the dramatic changes the garden goes through from season to season. It’s fabulous to watch and learn from it.
Grow Your Own Veg (with Carol Klein)
Here’s Carol Klein again only this time she’s not only showing how she’s begun to grow her own vegetable garden again, but she’s also guiding a first-time gardener who is growing organic vegetables for her young family.
Fork to Fork (with Monty Don)
Apparently, Monty Don is a very well-known gardener and presenter in the UK but I’d never heard of him until watching this program. He and his wife bought a very dated property and turned it around, making it a very interesting, beautiful and productive homestead. On the show, Monty Don teaches us how to sow, propagate, harvest and even cook (his wife does some of that, too) what grows in his pretty large garden. He’s a wealth of information so it’s another great opportunity to take note and learn what you can do with any size garden you have.