HDB Farming: Growing, Harvesting and Cooking My Own Kailan :D

Community Garden Singapore

This morning, I harvested my Kailan plus some Caixin from my personal plot at the community garden. (This is the 2nd blogpost in my HDB Farming series. The first was about Caixin which you can read by clicking here) I find it such a privilege and a joy to be able to grow my own vegetables despite living in a tiny pigeonhole of an apartment that we call an HDB flat. For many people overseas, having a garden might be something they take for granted. But to me, it’s truly a privilege. And may I add that the vegetables you “ownself grow, ownself cook” are really the best!

Here’s why:

  1. Peace of mind. I don’t use any pesticides so the vegetables can be eaten, really, after just a quick rinse to get rid of the soil residue.
  2. No wastage. I used to have veggies rotting in the fridge because I don’t cook and eat them fast enough. Now I simply harvest what I’m going to wash, cook and eat immediately. And if there are any scraps (yellowed leaves and all), they can head into the compost bin, and become fertilizer for the next batch of veggies.
  3. Super fresh. The veggies are so crisp that sometimes I have trouble breaking off the bottom part of the stem in order to get rid of the roots. Then I’ll have to use a pair of scissors to do the job.

If you have kids, I’m sure it’ll be easier to convince them to eat their greens if they had actually played a part in sowing the seeds, watering the plants, and harvesting the produce.

I’m usually all sweaty after I do my gardening. I’m sure I’m also inadvertently getting a good dose of Vitamin D from all that sunshine. Some people enjoy buying one of those fancy grow kits for use at home – you can grow tomatoes and strawberries even with those lights installed – but where’s the sunshine? Where’s the sweat and the toil? What comes easily often goes unappreciated. Also, we spend too much time indoors, in an air-conditioned environment. If you’re able to spend a small part of your day outdoors, in nature, getting your hands dirty and your back sweaty, and can return home with something you’re going to cook for your next meal, you’ll certainly note an increase in your ‘happiness level’.

I steamed the veggies with some garlic. ‘Cos I’m having a cold, I’m eating more veggies, garlic, onions, etc. Too bad for Queen Elizabeth that she doesn’t enjoy garlic.

growing kailan in singapore

*I steam the veggies because some nutrients are water-soluble, so I eat the veggies and drink what’s left in the plate too. 🙂

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