Spring is here.

That means it’s time for me to kill some plants.

I’m a person who loves gardening. Yet I’m not very good at it. In Korea, even though it seems that every patch of dirt is fair game to be turned into someone’s cabbage patch, I don’t have much luck in finding something. My elderly landlord has claimed all the dirt in front of the little apartment house, and I’m not going to fight him for it. Besides, he seems to be a hardcore gardener, laying out black plastic at certain times and growing beautiful heads of cabbage, even in the throes of winter.

This year, I’m making sure my plants have adequate soil and plenty of morning sun. I’m not going to over water them. I’m going to pinch them back to make them more full. I’m going to… I don’t know. Likely some kid playing hide and seek will knock them over in the end.

Getting culinary herbs from the local florists is a survival tip I tell many people to cure the ills of not having many spices available in the pantry. Florists usually have rosemary and mints. This year, I have been seeing more thyme. Two years ago, I saw a good bit of basil, and I have been trying to track it down again.

There isn’t a great variety of herbs available, but I can get the basics. It also impresses and baffles the shopkeepers when they ask what I’m planning to use the herbs for. It hasn’t caught widespread yet that rosemary tastes as good as it smells and looks. Nonetheless, one of the Korean teachers at my school mentioned using rosemary in her bibimbap to the other teachers, who were amazed.

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