Signs of Life

In 2013, during my access course in Leeds, I started to grow stuff. Mostly chillies but also heirloom tomatoes and herbs. I took some of my chilli plants to university with me but sadly they didn’t survive my absence when I went into hospital, succumbing to those pesky Scariad flies. A shame, as they had been great croppers, particularly the Seven Pod/Pot variety. I’d forgotten how much pleasure cultivating these plants had given me and now that I am settled, I have decided to once again turn my fingers a green hue. Whilst rummaging around in the garage I found a jiffy bag containing leftover seeds. I’m not holding my breath as I’ve been trying to germinate them for a week now. Having said that, one of the Bailey Piquin seeds sprung into life so you never know. On top of these, I also acquired some more varieties from the same company, some of which have already germinated and been relocated to their propagator home for the near future.

I find growing these plants quite therapeutic. It somehow harnesses the nurturing side of my character and is also an excellent exercise in developing patience – something we ADHD tribe lack in abundance. They can be quite difficult to grow, too, so the challenge is rewarding in itself, and the dividends are fruitful (pun completely intended). It’s also a cheap hobby as the basics such as a propagator, can be purchased from pound stores and the seeds are a couple of quid for ten. I bought three packets from the lovely folk at The Chilli Pepper Company , who throw in a couple of extra packets to make up for the postage costs (which aren’t that bank-breaking, although maybe so if you only buy one packet). I germinate my seeds on wet kitchen towel in plastic food trays, inside those plastic post bags that are black on the inner. The top of my boiler provides the warmth they need.

I also have some lime basil, three types of tomato, and stevia on the go, although so far just one tiny lime basil seedling has poked it’s little green head through the soil. The stevia failed completely to germinate last time so I hold no high hopes that this time will be any different. One can but try.



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