What to do in February


With spring just round the corner, February is a month of expectation in the container garden. You can also start sowing seeds again (hurrah!). Chillies, peppers and aubergines are particularly worth sowing now. For keen growers who want to get a head start, there are other crops you can sow this month, too - see [...]

Wellbeing and changing the city with containers

Edible plants and flowers change the feel of the concrete.

At first glance, growing food in containers at home might seem like just a fun hobby with the bonus of a few freshly grown veg. However, in my experience working with hundreds of other container growers over the last eight years, it can also support change at much deeper levels. It has potential to support real change in [...]

Flowers, apples, artichokes and other lessons from 2017

Potager container gardening

Growing is endlessly fascinating as there’s always more to learn. As winter approaches, it's a good time to reflect on the successes and learning of the season. Here are five (of the many!) things I learnt in 2017. This year, I grew more flowers. In amongst the salads, herbs and fruits, I planted cosmos, verbena, along [...]

Mint for life… (the secret of keeping supermarket mint alive)

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If you've tried growing a pot of supermarket mint, you might have discovered that it usually looks sad and dies after a few weeks. (At least, that is what happened to my first attempts!). But did you know that there is a super easy way to make supermarket mint grow, flourish and last for years? Find out how [...]

Harvesting the bounty

The flavour of spring - mint, chives and fava shoots to lift a stir fry.

How much can you actually get to eat from containers on two growing ladders that span six feet (2 metres)? This week I'm sharing pictures of some of the harvests from the last two weeks and how we ate them.... I hope to highlight how even a small container garden can contribute something special to your meals every day. [...]

The easy way to grow lemon grass in containers

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When you start to grow your own food, a nice surprise is that some ‘exotic’ plants turn out to be easier to grow than you might expect. Lemon grass is one.  A few years ago, I thought this only grew in the warmth of Thailand or Vietnam. The good news is that it also grows [...]

How much food can you grow in six foot?

Growing ladders are simple, effective way of growing more in a small space.

How much food can you grow in six by three foot (two by one metres)? After growing £900 of food in a year on my London balcony and £548 in six months in my Newcastle concrete backyard, I'm intrigued to find out. I've built two growing ladders (see picture above), which enable me to have three or four [...]