Alapfok – B1
In the picture we can see an elderly man and a cute little girl planting tomatoes in a pot. There are lots of tomato plants around them, some of them are ripe and some of them are still unripe. The man may be the grandfather of the little girl. He’s helping her to fill the pots with the soil to prepare it for the tomato plant. They’re in the garden, but not outside. They’re in a greenhouse. It’s raining outside and it’s probably early spring when the weather is still not warm enough to grow tomatoes out in the garden. In the greenhouse the temperature is warm and the plants can grow well. Most people like doing the gardening. It’s usually cheaper to grow vegetables at home than to buy them at the market, and they are healthier as well. Home-grown vegetables and fruit are delicious and it’s very convenient that you just go out to the garden and pick something fresh when you do the cooking. My favourite vegetables are tomatoes and peas, but I also like beans and I’m happy when the first strawberries appear at the market.
Középfok – B2
This photo must have been taken in spring because we can see tomato plants in a greenhouse. In summer tomatoes don’t need a greenhouse, they can grow very well outside in the garden, too. A little girl and an elderly man are working in the greenhouse. They’re filling a flowerpot with soil and probably they’re going to plant tomato plants in the pot. There are several pots of cherry tomatoes in different stages of ripening around them. It seems the little girl is happy to help the man who’s probably her grandpa. Gardening is good fun and it’s also useful. It’s very economical to grow your own vegetables and fruit in your garden if you have enough ground for it, though it can be hard work. You need good tools to start with. A spade to dig the dirt, a hoe to deal with the weeds, a rake to smooth the soil, secateurs to prune the trees. Gardening needs some expertise, you have to know where to plant what and how to do pest control. But if you invest enough time and effort and take good care of your garden it pays off. You can harvest and enjoy your own crop.
We live in a house with a garden and I also enjoy gardening. We don’t grow any vegetables in the garden we only have a few fruit trees, raspberry bushes and a small strawberry patch in the back garden. We have lots of flowers – snowdrops, tulips, daffodils, roses, hyacinths, lilies of the valley, forget-me-nots, violets – and grass of course. The lawn needs a lot of care if you want it to be green all summer. It needs mowing every second week, you have to water it almost every day and weed it if necessary. But no matter how much you care for it will never be as green as the lawn for example in England. Hungarian summers are too dry for that and the lawn would need more rain. Watering in itself unfortunately can’t make up for that.
Felsőfok – C1
The picture shows an elderly gentleman and a small girl working together on a gardening project inside a greenhouse. The greenhouse can provide the necessary circumstances for vegetables to grow even when the circumstances outside aren’t ideal. A greenhouse can be heated, the humidity and the light can be controlled, so all the conditions are given to grow vegetables no matter which part of the year you’re in. Whether it’s a good thing or not is a controversial issue. Some say that it’s absolutely unnecessary and unwise to eat, for example, tomatoes in the winter months and we should stick to eating only what’s seasonal and grows in the garden and on the fields as their nutrients are better, fresher and they contain more minerals and vitamins than their counterparts grown in greenhouses. Others insist on their right to eat whatever they have a liking for, no matter where it comes from or what kind of environmental issues it poses. It’s a fact that growing vegetables and fruits in greenhouses requires lots of electricity and puts a strain on the environment, but the crop that comes out of them is not only a treat for your eyes, but is also good for your health. The more varied diet you have the healthier it is. Seasonal goods can be rather dull after a while and pose a challenge for cooks and housewives how to use them as ingredients if they don’t want to cook the same dishes always.
Gardening is a very popular pastime activity. Home-grown vegetables and fruit are said to contain more nutrients than those you can purchase in big hypermarkets. Working in the garden is also beneficial for health, it relieves stress, moves your muscles and provides lots of fresh oxygen for your lungs. Children are usually fond of planting seeds and harvesting the products they grow. Gardening with the grandparents or parents is generally more educational than science lessons in school where the kids only learn about things in theory. Experiencing the real shape, smell and texture of a vegetable or fruit is lasting and they definitely will remember what nature has taught them. In my opinion schools should be less theoretical and should teach more practical subjects. Gardening could be introduced as a practical subject where children could experiment with seeds and plants and could acquire first-hand experience about what textbooks try to cram into their heads with little success. Gardening doesn’t require a big plot of land, a small patch of land is usually available even in an urban environment or if all else fails – you can grow plants in window boxes as well. Nothing is impossible, if there is a will there’s a way.