What made me decide to become a chef was visiting the school where I studied and seeing the trainee chefs dressed in their outfits picking fresh herbs from the garden and cooking with them immediately and smelling the aroma's that the herbs give while cooking in the kitchen.
Once I started studying my Mother planted a garden full of herbs for me to cook with so when I eventually graduated and later moved in with my boyfriend it was definitely something I missed, buying packets from the store is not nearly the same as snipping them yourself while walking outside in the sun and is such a waste as you never finish the whole pack before it goes off.
On my travels to Italy I noticed that everybody has herbs and tomatoes growing in the sun in their gardens amongst other vegetables and fruits too. I then decided upon my return to plant my own herbs and tomatoes although I don't have a garden the pots will be a great way to start.
Its a lot easier than you may think, I took my mother along to Stodels, bought the tomato and herb plants, pots, bases, spades, sand, soil, herb mix and bark. This is all you need for herbs but for tomato plants you need a bamboo stick to support the plant, cable ties and scissors.
I am learning as I go, some are growing really well and others are finding it possibly too sunny but its better than buying the vacuum packs from the store.
They all need a little pruning, the herbs must be trimmed at the tips every so often and the tomato plant needs to be pruned of the bottom few stalks so it does not get too heavy with fruit.
I have chosen to plant my favorite herbs which are Basil, Thyme, Parsley, Sage, Chillies and Celery. I love coming home after work watering the pants and snipping some for our dinner in the evening. Can't wait to make a Fresh Caprese salad with my first tomatoes.
Pictures Copyright by Tamsyn Wells