Tennis player turned quarantine gardener

There are not many times throughout the year we are able to switch off from tennis completely . How often do we let niggly tennis injuries heal and let the body recover? Probably never. I cannot think of anytime over the past number of years where I have taken a break from the tennis court for such a long period. 2020 has been the first time in years that my body has got to rest. Hopefully this will be good for allowing aches and pains to heal.

In the spring my daily routine involves several hours on court a day, especially coming into the warmer months of the year. With such large gaps in my schedule I have taken to doing some gardening. Wimbledon Tennis is synonymous with its incredible gardens, the floral displays and the colour. I hope to focus on feeding my stomach but will try some horticulture too.

I would fall into the beginner gardener category and I am planning to start small quarantine gardening and see where it leads me in 2020.  I am also keen to provide some food for myself and be self-sustainable as far as  I can be . I am a big foodie and love my food, a tennis foodie! Ofcourse everything I grow is really good for the body too so its a win win!


I purchased some ‘Early’ seed potatoes and they have been chitting on my windowsill for around 10 days. The potatoes basically begin to shoot ( grow) and once the chits are long enough  they can be planted. For handiness I have purchased some potato grow bags which make it easy to plant and cover over. It also means I don’t have to do the back breaking work of digging drills. So I have placed 3 seed potatoes in each bag and covered them over with 6 inches of soil at the bottom of my grow bag. I will water and keep an eye on them.

Grow bags with potatoes pushing through


My grandfather used to grow tomatoes. He would cultivate them from seed towards the end of February. I remember every windowsill in the house would be filled with used butter tubs and my granny would warn me so stay away from them.’Your granda will have your guts for garters’she would say. Anyway I am a little bit later than my grand father would have been but I am going to try some patio tomatoes from seed. I pierces holes in the bottom of my butter tubs and filled them with some compost. I watered the soil and then added my tomato seeds. I finished off by sprinkling each tub with a covering of soil.

Rhubarb and Strawberries

I have rhubarb growing in my garden for several years and it is a lovely treat. It thrives on neglect and I can usually get around 6 crops a year from them. 6 crops = 6 rhubarb crumbles. My strawberries grow each year by accident. The birds manage to eat more of them than me but a home grown strawberry is like nothing else.

Nothing quite like home grown rhubarb


For a little interest this year I am going to grow some herbs on my windowsill too. Oregano, parsley, thyme and chives will be a good start hopefully they will germinate quickly too and I can use for cooking.

So there you have it this tennis player’s plans to survive the current pandemic. Ofcourse I hope to be back on court soon but I will try and keep my little garden going too!