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Order Line 0330 123 4123
To grow vegetables, you will need an open, welldrained plot.
When you first start out, it is more useful to have a cold frame than a greenhouse to grow vegetables in. There are different benefits to growing in a greenhouse and a cold frame. If you can include both in your vegetable garden, so much the better.
Growing your own vegetables is convenient. You can grow far more varieties than you can buy in the shops and, as well as growing vegetables that you like, you can experiment with unusual varieties.
If seed is sown directly into the soil, good preparation is essential. Dig the soil in the autumn and again in early spring to remove stones and weeds. Then rake over until the soil is fine before sowing your seed as the supplier recommends.
As sowing times and planting distances vary, it is important to follow the instructions on the seed packet.
Store left-over seed, and seed you have saved yourself, in a cool, dark, dry place to use again or swap with your friends.
Keep a diary to plan successive sowings of vegetables. Some will crop late, some early, but with careful planning you can make the most of the growing season and avoid shortages, gluts and a lack of variety.
In the vegetable garden straight rows of plants are easiest to keep free of weeds that will compete with your plants for nutrients. Straight rows can be easily accessed to weed with a hoe.
Crops will thrive and you will have fewer pests and diseases if you don't grow the same crop on the same ground year after year. Crop rotation will prevent an imbalance of nutrients in the soil.
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ROOT CROPS include beetroots, carrots, parsnips, radishes, swedes, turnips and potatoes
BRASSICAS include broccoli, brussel sprouts, cabbages, cauliflowers, kale and pak choi
LEGUMES/OTHERS include beans, peas, celery, courgettes, leeks, endives, lettuces, marrows, onions, spinach, leaf beet and sweet corn
Even if you don't strictly follow a system of crop rotation, try not to grow the same thing in the same place for too long.
Potatoes are an excellent crop for a new or neglected garden as the root system breaks up the soil and improves its structure. There are few soils in which potatoes won't grow reasonably well.
Many recipes make use of onions, shallots or garlic. You can easily store these indispensable vegetables for future use. Onions of ordinary size and quality can be grown in most soils.
Peas are one of the highlights of a vegetable gardener's year. In small gardens, sow peas in ground that can afterwards be used for salad, leeks or cabbage. Peas need plenty of water to thrive.
Harvest 'cut and come again' varieties after just four weeks. Pull single leaves from each lettuce as required, or cut a plant 3cm above the base and let it sprout again. The plants will keep on growing.