Veg Growing tips for beginners with Rosie (@rosiesallotment)
So you want to start growing your own veg, but the responsibility of looking after a living thing is triggering memories of the Tamagotchi graveyard in your parents’ attic. We get it. Sometimes no matter how much you love something, you don’t always know how to look after it (too deep?) So many Tamagotchis met an early fate from being overfed or having the lights left on when they went to sleep and you don’t want your plants to follow suit. But fear not – we’ve got some secrets to share that should give you the skills and confidence to start growing your own fruit and veg regardless of how many indoor plants or 90s toys you might haved killed in the past…
We spoke to Rosie from @rosiesallotment to get her top tips for those just starting out growing their own veg, our fave being – to have fun with it and remember to enjoy the process of it. And whilst plants wont bleep to tell you they’re hungry, after a while you’ll pick up the signs of over/under watering and be eating tomatoes straight off the vine.
- Start sooner rather than later!
Whilst different types of fruit and veg can be planted throughout a lot of the year – Rosie says June is an important one for growing outdoors. “June is the big plant out month so literally anything you can think of goes out: tomatoes, spinach, leeks, sweetcorn, brassicas so cabbage, Brussel sprouts, cauliflower, broccoli, swede.” So don’t fear if you’re only thinking about it now – you can still get planting!
- Keep it simple for starters
It can be tempting to plan out your list of all the plants you want to grow, but try to exercise some restraint! Start small and work up to your dream plot. “If you’ve just started out at an allotment, try and clear a little patch first. It can be overwhelming to attempt a full plot at once! I always got told to just grow what you can first.. then to start experimenting once you have the space. I’m still overwhelmed by the size of my allotment but little sections make you feel so much better!”
- And that applies to what you grow…
Whilst it can be tempting to just choose to grow your favourite foods, start with things that are a little easier to grow. Rosie recommends radishes and Kohl rabi as easy veg for startering “Kohl rabi is a new fav of mine and so easy to grow. Keep in the fridge chopped up with some lemon and it’s to die for.”
- You can grow a lot in a pot
No matter how small your outside space is, you can still grow loads of your own fruit and veg! Even if it’s just a window box, there’s still loads you can grow! “If you’ve got a balcony, try pot growing. Many people grow everything they need in pots. It’s so impressive. Most fruit and vegetables are hardy in the UK but if you’re up for a challenge.. sweet potatoes can be grown and even lemons!”
- To seed or not to seed…
When starting out, you can either opt for growing straight from the seed or buying young plants. Many people will go with the latter as it takes one step out of the process, reducing the space to make errors. However, from doing so, you’re also missing out, Rosie explains – “Growing from seed is much more fascinating and I find, much easier than getting young plants. You also get much more satisfaction from growing from seed!”
- Enjoy yourself!
“The one thing that I wish people said to me when I begun growing my own, was to not overthink and just enjoy the growing journey. We as humans care, and as a result we care for what we grow, and sometimes we over care.. meaning over watering, or over fertilizing. Let nature do its thing, the plants will tell you when they’re unhappy!” So chill out and don’t stress about it, as long as you give your plants love and attention – they should be fine!