Surrogate Gardening

I’m spending Sydney’s summer in Germany and my garden is being tended and eaten by my nephew John (when he can beat the bandicoot, possum, caterpillars and aphids to it anyway). He has been kind enough to send me a batch of photos so I can appreciate the fruits of my labour – and be green with envy.

First up, carrots. I wasn’t impressed with the sprouting of my seeds, but those that did germinate seem to have done very well. I have it on good authority that there are more to be harvested whenever anyone is ready to eat them.

Carrot harvest

Next, the potatoes. This small patch (reportedly 1×2 feet) produced 20 potatoes. This is from the batch of seed potatoes. It could be the harvest from one or maybe 2 of those potatoes.

potato harvest

Below are the potato plants that are from the last of my kitchen potatoes that I threw in the ginger bed back in October before boarding my plane for Germany. The bed is really shady so who knows how they’ll produce.

There’s a bit of ginger sprouting behind the potatoes – I think they are 2nd year shoots but I suppose they could be from my last mad planting from my fridge before travelling.

potato plants

I’ll end this post with my corn. I still am inordinately proud of this crop (it even has ears!!!). I’m such a farmer 🙂 And the zucchini seems to be hanging in there. With all the rain this summer I suspect it will die a slow death from leaf mould – but who knows, with John urging it on, maybe he’ll get a harvest.


I feel I need to be fully honest here and admit the Brussels sprouts died a sad and lonely death under the teeth of every animal that wanders in my garden. The photos John sent showed some really large plants but nothing left for humans. Ah well, maybe next year.

The whole garden looks incedibly good considering the neglect its endured. Maybe mother nature isn’t totally incompetent after all!


About Laura Rittenhouse

I'm an American-Australian author, gardener and traveller. Go to my writing website: for more. If you're trying to find my gardening blog, it's here.
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3 Responses to Surrogate Gardening

  1. It is always nice to know that your garden is in good hands when you are gone. I hope you enjoy a warm Christmas by the fireside!

  2. I had a lovely Christmas and a really fun New Year’s Eve. And you’re right, it’s great to know my garden is in good hands – and a good belly. John used some of my potatoes, carrots, celery, parsley and an onion to make potato soup. He sent the photos to prove it.
    John's harvestJohn's soup

  3. karen says:

    Hooray for John! What an amazing cook, even made bread in your bread maker!
    Thanks for leaving him all the goodies..

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