Grow Your Own

Square roots

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Short on growing space? London-based gardener and freelance journalist Lucy Purdy explores the art of growing food on a single square metre with Lolo Houbein. Lolo Houbein was delighted with her gift of a cabbage from the German soldier. Starving during the famine in occupied Holland in World War II, she was too weak to […]

Grow for Flavour: James Wong tells how to turbocharge taste

by Rhiannon James

See a strawberry and you might delight in the gleam of its ruby red skin, its evocative perfume or its delicate balance of tartness and sweetness. James Wong on the other hand, will be getting excited about its anthocyanins, volatile molecules and fragrant esthers. And while most of us are really only thinking “Yum!” when […]

Edibles to sow in the urban winter garden

by Tom Moggach

After a mild Christmas and the warmest year on record, it’s no wonder we’re all confused. Will spring come early? Should we still brace ourselves for a cold snap? When should seeds be sown to get a flying start? These are all questions this article will strive to answer, plus you’ll find a handy planting plan for the months ahead.

Square metre gardening

by Lucy Purdy

Short on growing space? London-based gardener and freelance journalist Lucy Purdy explores the art of growing food on a single square metre with author and vegetable gardening enthusiast ,Lolo Houbein.

Guerrilla Gardening: Cultivating Concrete

by Lucy Purdy

J G Ballard wrote that the “suburbs dream of violence”, describing town and city dwellers counting down the days until the “nightmares that will wake them into a more passionate world”. While poets, artists and storytellers have long been fascinated by this dynamic of stultifying yet addictive city life, guerrilla gardeners, Lucy Purdy discovers, are turning to the soil to grapple with ecological and social disintegration.

Hampton Court Palace Kitchen Garden

by Lucy Purdy

Where horses once thundered past, kicking up earth during the dark chivalry of a jousting contest, now sit plump pumpkins with burnt orange skins, beneath the late summer sun. They take their place alongside peas, salad crops and herbs in a spot only a stone’s throw from the banks of the River Thames. This is the Hampton Court Palace Kitchen Garden, newly restored and packed with heritage varieties – a thrill to the senses and a slice of history to boot.

Growing unusual edibles: salads 2

by Tom Moggach

For anyone who loves to grow their own ingredients, star billing must go to your salads – surely the easiest of high quality harvests. In a previous article, we suggested some less familiar leaves and flowers to liven up your salad bowl – including mustards, nasturtiums and purslanes. So here’s round two – another batch of easy-to-grow leaves that will lift your salad mixes to the next level.

Grounds for Success:gourmet mushroom growing

by Lucy Purdy

Nestled between John Lewis and Next in the heart of Exeter, an unassuming-looking office block is host to a surprising urban crop – gourmet mushrooms. What is more, they are being grown from the city’s waste coffee grounds, gleaned from the likes of Starbucks and Costa Coffee. Using vacant office space and vertical growing to produce a protein-rich crop could be a solution to the food challenges of tomorrow, discovers Lucy Purdy when she meets those at the Fungi Futures CIC.