Tuesday, 5 April 2011

Give it a Grow!!

I really gotta stop using these cheesy titles but they just keep coming to me!!
Anyway... I have a feeling that a lot of people would like the idea of 'growing their own' but somehow feel that they cant... whether it be a lack of time, a lack of knowledge or a lack of space. the thing is that anyone and I mean anyone can grow something. Everyone has got a windowsill right??? Well that is a great starting point... get yourself a window box or a few pots, fill up with multi-purpose compost and sow some seeds into it!! herbs is a great starting point, they are a great accompaniment to any meal, look lovely and smell great so they are ideal for a windowsill inside or out! i have one on the go in my kitchen windowsill and have just planted a new one to keep the supply coming as I use them a lot...
They should be up and coming in just a few weeks time.

If you wanted to go a step further and have a little space outside then there is a lot that can be grown in patio pots, old buckets, even an old wellington boot can provide a great growing area for a strawberry plant!!
I have successfully grown herbs, any salad item, courgettes, peas, runner beans, carrots, garlic, onions, shallots, tomatoes, chilli and  peppers in growing containers or old buckets or even more convenient... ready to use grow bags.
A sunny spot and some regular routine care is all it takes and you could be heading out in the summer evenings to harvest fresh home grown produce for your dinner right from your back yard. Now when i say 'regular routine care', I mean the bare minimal effort... a little thinning out at the start and some watering a few times a week... and to pull the occasional weed if it is cheeky enough to grow!!
Honestly folks give it a go, once you have picked the first of your selected choice you'll get that feeling that I get every time I pick something... its a pretty good feeling trust me. And get the kids involved let them look after a plant and it may very well change how they feel about eating vegetables if they were anything like I was growing up... spuds was my veg intake and that was it!! 
When i started growing 2 years ago i had never tasted a courgette until I was given some surplice plants by a neighbour... Ive never looked back since!

If you dont have a greenhouse you can start the seeds of inside, again on a windowsill... you can even make home-made pots which can be planted right into the ground/container. These pots are made from old newspapers... and this is how:

get a small tumbler and fold a sheet of newspaper to a little taller than its size

then fold the excess paper into the tumbler

remove the tumbler and the paper should hold its shape (you can use a little tape if you like)

turn the pot over, now scrunch up another page 

stuff the other page into the bottom of the pot to form the base

fill with multi-purpose compost and its ready for the seed
I spoke on local radio station Clare FM today on The Today Show about making use of all these ideas.
If anyone wants to ask anything feel free to leave a comment and I will respond to all, or alternatively contact me on Facebook or Twitter!! If you dont ask you wont know!!

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