Updated: Dec 12, 2021
This was my second year in my own house allowing me to grow anything I want in the space I have, which is quite limited. I wanted to start of easy due to still sorting out bits, moving into the house and getting everything set up that has taken a long time. However, I still grew a fair bit for my little garden. I have always wanted to grow a number of unique plants, as well as my own fruit and veg to eat. However, I still have much to learn, so I am trying out new thing and love sharing my progress with you. So here is all the fruit, veg, herbs and other plants I grew, ate and enjoyed caring for in 2020.
One of my main goals throughout the year was to grow as much edible food, as possible. I have always loved the idea of being somewhat self-sufficient and although I will not be anywhere near that with the size of my garden I still hope to grow some delicious fruit and vegetable to eat and learn what works for the future, so this is what I have decided to grow:
This is a sweet summer favourite of nearly anyone in the UK. I thought I would start with a few of these sweet treats in one of my hanging baskets. I have three different types of strawberries two British and one French to see how they grown and if there is much difference. They all did well but the British variety defiantly faired better, I assume due to the fact it climatises better to our weather.
Although I did not have a full sized planter, I did manage to get my hands on three small troughs that I planted two rows of carrots. I created a mix of soil and sand, so the carrots could grow easier and watered regularly. As they sprouted and gotten larger I have thinned them out by repotting them into the third planter. We got a decent number of carrots from this but I believe the planters were too small to allow the carrots to properly grow.
Tomatoes are the quintessential gardener food of choice and the first point of call for anyone wanting to grow some veg.. They are easy to grow, incredibly rewarding and can produce a huge amount of food, I have three tomato plants in a single grow bag with a bamboo support frame, with garden twine between them to support the heavy fruitful tomato growths. One thing I have learnt was not to forget watering them, seeing these plant droop so low like a sulking child is saddening, so it is a every evening job and sometimes in the morning too.
I wanted to grow potatoes, as I believe they would give the highest return in nutritious value and volume. It is also one of the most versatile vegetables that can be used for a number of things on your dinner plate. I have a small garden but still wanted to get as much out of it as I can, so seeing these grow bags in my local garden centre and quickly berried a sprouting potato. The amount of foliage this plant sprawls out is outstanding and really indicates a large return.
Additionally, I am growing a number of herbs that can be added to loads of dishes and be used to feed my rabbits. I have some outside permanently and the others growing in the windowsill. They are useful and provide a great aroma whenever I walk by them. I don’t do much to upkeep them, just keep them watered and occasionally pull out any weeds that manage to join my herbs. Here are the herbs I am growing this year
Indoors I am growing:
Outdoors I am growing:
My main goal, whilst trying to make my garden look nice and colourful was to help the bees and other pollinators, so I tried to ensure the plants I picked benefited them and their efforts to collect nectar and pollen. I won’t mention all the flowers growing in my garden, you can look at some of these through scowering my social media. However, some of the key flowers I grew are:
Clematis – It came with the garden when we brought it and it comes up beautifully with more than three dozen flowers each year. All I have to do is provide a little wire for it to climb up and keep it well watered.
Dahlia – After seeing these in a number of gardens I was keen to have them in mine. I have been told these are difficult to grow, especially in pots, so I decided to give them a try, although I did get it to grow unfortunately it wasn’t the grand Dahlia I was hoping for.
Senetti – Me and my partner saw a beautiful bunch of purple Senetti at the garden centre and could not leave it there. After picking it up we put it in a larger pot and left it to its own devises. It was clearly a good choice as the bees seemed to love them.
Roses – We have a couple of rose bushes at the back of my garden, again, I don’t have to do much other than water them regularly and ensure my rabbits don’t try to eat them. However, each year they flower nicely for the local insects to enjoy.
As mentioned above this is my first year in my own house and I am trying to grow as many things as possible. This is because I enjoy the site of them and think they are incredibly beneficial for the environment and my household. They provide tremendous benefits mentally, cleaning the air and a tool to learn from in one of my bid to grow a nice collections of plants. I won't be able to name them all but some of the ones I got this year:
· Pilea Peperomioides
· Snake Plant
· Fairy Washboard (Haworthiopsis Limifolia)
· Dracena Fragrans
· A couple of cactuses & succulents (sorry, I don’t know their names)
Further to the above, I also thought it would be a bit of fun to have a little competition between myself ad my partner. So on top of everything we decided to grow some sunflowers. We picked up a giant variety to see how well we could do and who would come on top. We had a lot of fun watering our own plant, carefully putting them into larger pots to see who would get the largest one. It is also a great flower for the wildlife, we saw tons of bees on them and when they had finished growing you can either use the seeds for yourself or leave the heads out for the birds.
My garden is quite small and I am still learning a lot about growing both indoors and out. However, I am still managing to grow a lot and having a lot of fun doing so. I hope to continue to grow more and learn about how best to grow them and when. I already feel like I have become more akin to gardening and growing food, which I hope to develop to increase my return in the food I grow year on year. I also hope to grow more flowers and other plants in my garden to make it look nice but to also help the hopefully growing wildlife in my backyard. I am just starting my journey into gardening and growing my own food but I hope to learn plenty and develop my skills for the future. I would love to hear what you are growing this year, so let me know in the comments or by tagging me in your pictures on Instagram, twitter or Facebook.