The thought of fresh, tasty food that you have grown yourself is very tempting for many, but where do you start?
Whilst many people use allotments, there can be very long waiting lists and they can take a large amount of time, and can be expensive. By using an unused corner of your garden you can try out vegetable gardening without a large undertaking.
Choosing where to set up you vegetable garden.
Vegetables love the sun, and this makes them hardier, sweeter tasting and helps to provide a bountiful harvest.
Most garden soils will be perfectly fine for growing vegetables, although if the ground is particularly hard, with lots of stones, consider a raised bed. Soil conditioning with some organic, or even better, home made compost, simply by digging it in to the soil, will provide an ideal condition for growing. Tilling is a hot topic for arguments both for and against – adding compost will help whether you till the ground or not.
What to start growing
If you are a beginner, itâ€™s best to start with easy plants, donâ€™t be afraid to buy fledgling plants rather than trying to cultivate from seeds until you become more experienced.
Some of the easiest things to grow include:
- Onions and garlic – simply plant an onion bulb or a garlic clove in spring or autumn, and in the late summer after the foliage dies back, remove from the ground and leave to dry in the sun.
- Spring onions – sow thinly 15cm apart in late winter to summer.
- Lettuce – sow seeds 8 inches apart directly in to the ground and cover with 1-2 cm of soil late March – late July for summer and autumn harvest.
- Potatoes – simply plant a potatoes that has seeded and is sprouting 15 cm deep with the shoot pointing upwards from late March with harvesting 20 weeks later.
- Beetroot – sow directly, 2.5cm deep, 10cm apart into the ground between March and July.