Have you noticed my carrot photos on Instagram recently? I’m so amazed! I grew carrots from seeds and they are giants! I have a couple of vegetable trugs in our garden and some pots in which we have been growing various fruit and veggies for three years now, ever since we’ve had our garden. I don’t find a lot of time to get out in the garden to tend to my crops as I’m a busy mum who tries to work full time around household chores and mum duties, so the easier the veg to grow, the better. I tend to pop the seeds in the soil and hope for the best! Ben is in the garden much more than me so he remembers to water them. Though the UK rainy weather often does a good job of this for us!
I hope as the children grow older I will find more time to grow a lot more and I’ll encourage them to help me. Reuben is only two, so a little young, but he can still help with digging around and dropping seeds in (if I can prevent him from putting them in his mouth first!) Bella is five and loves to help out with anything we are doing, particularly gardening. Children find gardening fascinating and love to watch things grow, especially if they’ve planted it themselves. I’m certain it encourages a love for the outdoors, wildlife and eating a healthier diet. There are plenty of vegetables and fruit that are very easy for children to grow and look after. By easy I mean popping the seed or plant in compost, watering daily and just letting nature do its work; easy for us adults and very easy for children to enjoy the pleasures of growing their own food.
Here are some super easy vegetables to plant throughout the different seasons:
Carrots from seed – teeny little seeds that can be left to their own devices. Cover with some thin mesh netting until the green tops are fairly long to prevent carrot fly. I sow my seeds quite early in spring after the last frost.
Potatoes from seed – plant your potato seeds half way down in potato sacks late February to March, once the green shoots start to poke through add more compost to cover them and keep doing this to the top of the sack. You’ll get a load of greenery up top with flowers, once this starts to wilt it’s time to empty the sack to find all your potatoes!
French beans from seed – these produce a great crop and it seems the more you pick, the more beans you get! They just keep popping out of nowhere! I sow these once it’s quite warm in late May/early June as they really don’t like cold weather. They wrap themselves around the nearest thing and climb, so create a bamboo wigwam for them to grab onto and climb high.
Courgette plant – I cheated with courgettes this year as the seeds I sowed in spring didn’t materialise, so the neighbour gave us a courgette plant ready to plant out in June. The more you pick, the more you get. I read once a courgette plant can give up to 30 courgettes! Yum! Just make sure they have a sunny spot.
Leeks from seed in summer / plant in autumn – the first year I grew leeks they didn’t work so well, but last year they were brilliant! They are slow growers, so if you plant late in the summer they will grow quite slowly and survive the cold temperatures of autumn and winter. Or pop the plants out early autumn. We had lots of delicious leeks last year right through to the winter months. They just seem to last in the soil forever and aren’t bothered by the cold.
Check out my grow your own blog posts for more advice and photos of previous years harvests!