Seven days ago we planted a potager. It is not photographable for the moment because it’s only mud with tufts of green, surrounded by a two-foot high green — so it’s invisible, in theory — grill/fence thing to keep the dogs from trampling the delicate shoots and rabbits from dining on them.
I am not naturally inclined toward gardening, though I think there are few luxuries more extraordinary and spirit lifting than a magnificent jardin. However, I am soooo excited about my little project I can’t contain my enthusiasm. (Of course there are no weeds yet. . .)
As you probably know a potager is not merely a plot of earth with herbs, vegetables and fruits arranged willy-nilly. Part of its raison d’etre is to be beautiful. The ingredients are to be arranged not only to produce delicious mini “crops,” but also to delight the eye. These kitchen gardens, as we call them, are meant to be aesthetically pleasing, decorative, a tribute to the bounty and beauty of nature. Some intermingle flowers with the edibles. If mine works out, I plan to include blooms next year alongside my tomates.
The lovely painting, to which I aspire — produce-wise, not as an artist unfortunately — is by “Anmary” when you visit her site, click on “nature morte” to find her Legumes du Potager canvas.
I haven’t read either of these books, but both look charming and instructive, whichever one I lay my hands on first will be the one I shall read and if I don’t read it I’ll put it on the coffee table and pretend I did.
This is what we planted: coriandre (coriander); ciboulette (chives); estragon (tarragon); basilic (basil); menthe (mint); concombres (cucumbers); persil (parsley); courgettes (zucchini); épinard (spinach);batavia; tomates; haricots verts (the most dee-licious skinny green beans in the whole-wide-world that don’t need threading, unless they’re not happy at our house — then they’ll be mealy and disgusting) and mélisse (lemon balm) for divine tisanes. No carrots, no onions, no celery, no cabbage, no fruit.
Et voila, your cadeau du weekend. I hope it’s as beautiful where you are as it is here.