North Coast Times - - LOOK LOCAL - Tanya MacNaughton

LEARN­ING a new skill can be ex­cit­ing and daunt­ing all at the same time, and gar­den­ing is no ex­cep­tion.

What­ever your sit­u­a­tion, whether it is mov­ing house to some­where with more gar­den op­tions or just de­cid­ing now is the time to dis­cover your green thumb, head­ing to work in the great out­doors should be an en­joy­able ex­pe­ri­ence.

ABC Gar­den­ing Aus­tralia host Costa Ge­or­giadis shared some help­ful ad­vice to all gar­den­ing novices.

“For any­one new to gar­den­ing, wel­come aboard,” Ge­or­giadis said.

“There’s lot’s to see here, so part with any feel­ings of in­tim­i­da­tion and re­place them with eyes and ob­ser­va­tion.

“Have a look at you neigh­bour’s gar­den; peek over fences and through rail­ings. See what the gar­den­ers in your area are grow­ing be­cause if they’re cut­ting the mus­tard, then you can too.

“The next step af­ter peek­ing over the fence is when you see them, ask them ques­tions.

“Go down to your lo­cal com­mu­nity gar­den and see what’s grow­ing at that point in time. Speak to some of those gar- den­ing freaks down there be­cause they love it. Make that com­mu­ni­ca­tion and then start small.”

Ge­or­giadis sug­gested start­ing by plant­ing an ar­ray of salad greens and other ed­i­bles.

“Maybe plant a cou­ple of pots of cherry or heir­loom toma­toes,” he said.

“The cherry toma­toes are easy to start with be­cause they’re pretty bul­let­proof and don’t get at­tacked too much.

“Get with some pars­ley and basil and a herb pot and you’ll see how much you can har­vest. If you plant four or five let­tuces in a rea­son­able-sized pot, you can peel off the outer leaves to make a salad enough for two peo­ple with­out notic­ing you’ve even taken any leaves.

“When you come home and find you can fill a salad bowl, add some cherry toma­toes and then all you have to do is add some nice fetta cheese or maybe you’ll cook a piece of meat and put on top, but you have your base.”

He said an­other op­tion was to grow dif­fer­ent greens to make a juice or green smoothie.

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