When my kids were very young, we made a vegetable patch. We grew everything from potatoes to peas, we grew strawberries, raspberries and gooseberries, special favourites were the tall white leeks and the muddy carrots. My kids often used to sit in the dirt eating vegetables. The closest nod to food hygiene they gave was a quick rinse under the outside tap of things that were completely encased in mud.

I decided when my youngest arrived home from Uni due to coronavirus that we had better reinstate the veggie patch. She has Cystic Fibrosis and we know that realistically we won’t be able to go out again until a vaccine for Covid19 appears. The daily challenge of getting food to the house and then made safe to go into the fridge is exhausting. My theory is that if we can grow a few things it will be fun and easier. This is progress so far:

Our steps to get this far

  1. Chop very overgrown hedge back to very short so it can grow again from the base (long exhausting and very dangerous – hawthorn thorns hurt- a lot!)
  2. Dig weeds and gravel from the existing beds
  3. Dig well-rotted manure into the soil to enrich poor soil in the beds

Only three steps so far but two weekends of hard labour! There are two main beds, an area at the back against a south-facing wall – for tomatoes in grow bags maybe? An existing raised bed with rhubarb which does well every year, and two other existing raised beds which are quite small. I have also planted a new tub with some mint, top tip – don’t plant mint with anything else, it would take over the world if you let it and there are only so many new potatoes and mojitos you can use it for!

I’ve planted some seed potatoes my eldest daughter gave me for Mother’s Day already and this week I’m wating on the arrival of spinach, rocket, lettuce and courgette seeds. Watch this space!