SO far the early winter weather has been ideal, except for a couple of chilly hours some mornings, for not only progressing speedily with the annual winter cutback, but also to sit out in the garden for breakfast and lunch, to take an occasional rest with a refreshing beverage.
So what can a good garden contribute to your enjoyment of your life in Spain? In view of the limits on size of article, I do this as a checklist.
1. All round interest from plants and features, and the presence of birdlife.
2. Sensible exercise, if you delegate the heaviest jobs to a gardener or odd-job man as you age.
3. Gets you outdoors to re-establish contact with nature after, in many cases, an office or car driven lifestyle.
4. Summer shade and shelter from scorching winds.
5. Winter sun and shelter from chilly winds. Recently it has been possible to strip off and sunbathe in the garden to build up vitamin D reserves.
6. Attractive colour all the year round, a kaleidoscope of greens being the predominant year-round colour effect.
7. Comfortable seats with good views, where it becomes natural to rest and switch off from the rush of modern lives.
8. Productive offering seasonal fruits, vegetables, herbs and edible flowers and leaves throughout the year. Each being ecologically grown and providing a range of beneficial natural vitamins, minerals and fibres.
With respect to this, my book ‘Living well from the garden Mediterranean Style’, will help you decide what is best to plant, harvest and eat or drink, as healthy alternatives to imported tea or coffee and some so-called energy drinks.
When I checked this morning it was £4.99 from Amazon Books UK, and €6.59 from The Book Depository.
9.To maximise the benefit of eating and drinking anything that you grow in the garden, do ensure that you use no chemical products. Use either nothing or just natural sprays and dustings to solve any insecticide or fungal problems that occur.
If you still have problems locally in obtaining eco products, have a look at the websites of Trabe or Neudorf and buy by mail order.
10. A garden that gives you a sense of wellness when out in it for work or leisure.
Happy and healthy gardening to all readers. If any gardening or social club would like a talk along these lines during the next year, do get in contact early to discuss possible locations and dates. Contact is best via email@example.com.
© Dick Handscombe www.gardenspain.com
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