As my digital life has expanded, so my physical life has reduced, and that certainly includes the opportunity to grow things. Once I had a huge vegetable garden with fruit trees and bushes which together gave up a scrumptious harvest every year, but as I moved house my gardens got smaller and smaller until now I have only a balcony which, although it has wonderful views of the sea, is not conducive to anything that cannot stand strong salty winds and bright sunshine. I've never been brilliant at gardening and have largely depended on the resilience of my plants to defend themselves against my clumsy tending, but I still enjoy messing around with pots and soil, so what to do? I'm going to follow the lead of others in these apartments and buy a hardy seaside plant or two, but they're not very colourful.
So for my first summer here, I've decided to grow stuff anyway, just for the pleasure of it. I'll probably have to give most of the plants away because there's nowhere to put them, but I am going to try and raise some on the treacherous balcony and a few more inside.
Of course, one problem with favouring a digital life and getting rid of so many possessions in the process is that it's harder to keep things for re-use. I no longer have a shedful of handy plant pots and seed trays, but rather than buy new when I don't have the room to store them year-to-year I'm going back to my old habits from when I first started gardening, and collecting yoghurt pots etc as well as re-using baskets such as the one here, which once housed a flowery gift. I'm going for just four plants, Morning Glory, Calendula, Black-eyed Susie and Nasturtiums, none of which are exactly known for withstanding seaside balconies. So, we'll see. Can I grow a lovely view to gaze at when I look up from my keyboard?