Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Little things

In my everyday life, I often desire the big things: travel, fine food and wine, theatre, glamorous clothes and getting elegantly wasted on cocktails. When I was sick, I missed the mundane: cooking, even cleaning, but especially gardening. I was too sick to even go outside and the confinement was made that much more frustrating because my mail order seeds arrived the day before I took to my bed. There are lots of packets this year because I'm hoping to buy no more. As my permaculture plans creep along, I'm increasingly committed to seed saving and sowing. So the packets sit on the shelves, waiting for this weekend to make their debut.

I love seeds. Mostly, I love their names. I'm a sucker for something poetic or mysterious, something with a bit of a story in the background. Idelight beans, Brandywine and Rouge de Marmande tomatoes are far more appealing than 'Stringless green pod' or 'Sweetie'. It's the same with roses: who wants 'Sexy Rexy' or 'Blossomtime' when Duchesse de Brabant is waiting in the wings? (although the Admiral Rodney makes me want to know more). But my favourite name this year is Collective Farm Woman melon, from the Ukraine, from the island of Krim (it's not Tolkein!). Because while there's always a place for the sophisticated French types in the world, it's nice to see honest worth and hard work, calloused hands and sensible shoes receiving their due. It's the farm women, not the aristocrats, who keep the gardens going.

A final thought on the topic: I love the names of my seed suppliers. Eden Seeds is most appropriate, and Green Harvest also fits the name and the aim. But my favourite (as glimpsed on Gardening Australia last Saturday night) is my newest find: The Lost Seed, a company located on Roaring Beach Rd, South Arm, Tasmania. Isn't that a great address for saving seeds for the future?