Most of the basic salad ingredients are very simple growers so don’t be afraid to get stuck in.
Lettuce (plant all year)
- Fill a seed tray or pot with compost and scatter ¼ tsp. of seeds
- Cover with a small amount of compost, water and place in a sunny spot
- Don’t let the plant dry out but water gently
- You can start cutting the plants back when it reaches around 2-3in tall.
Beetroot (plant March – July, harvest June – October)
Easy to grow, straight into the garden or into a large pot.
- Sow seeds in pairs in a row 9 inches apart
- Water using a fine-head watering can and wait. Use your finger to test the soil – if it is dry up to the first crease of your finger then you’ll need to water
- It is better to water well infrequently.
Potatoes (plant March – mid April, harvest June – August)
- Only keep the 4 biggest shoots on each potato – remove the rest
- Plant at least 12in apart
- When the first shoots reach 6in high almost bury them in soil to encourage the plant to produce more potatoes
- Harvest in June/July once they begin to flower.
French Beans (plant April – June, harvest June – October)
Easy to tend as they don’t need support.
- Start them indoors to avoid problems with pests
- Add two seeds to a small pot of compost, cover with compost and water
- Once emerged remove the weakest seedling. When roots start to emerge from the base of the pot you can plant them in the garden
- Plant in a hole large enough for the root with the base of the stem at soil level. Press the soil back in around it and water.
Chillies (plant early Jan – May, harvest July onwards)
Perfect for adding a bit of heat to your summer dishes
- Plant in multi-cell seed tray and lightly cover with compost
- Water gently, then cover with cling film and place somewhere warm, such as an airing cupboard
- Between 2-4 weeks when the plant starts growing move to a warm place out of direct sunlight. Water from below and check daily that the surface is just moist
- When they sprout a second set of leaves transfer to 7cm pots of moist compost and feed weekly with a liquid tomato feed
- The gradually move the plants to bigger pots
- When it is warm enough (usually mid May) you should be able to house the plants outside.
Tomatoes (plant late May, harvest August – October)
Simple to grow and produce generous amounts.
- Don’t sow too many seeds, just a couple of plants will grow plenty
- Plant 3 plants in either a grow bag and water, individual pots or directly into soil (keep them 18 inches apart)
- Tie them to stakes for support
- Pinch the small side shoots that do not produce any flowers
And what about my garden waste?
Don’t forget that if you decide to take on a garden project you’ll need to dispose of the waste as well and a HIPPOBAG can help. Ideal for garden waste and soil the bags are a cost effective and hassle free option. Simply buy a bag, fill it and it’s gone.