Tom’s gardening tips

Mon 18 Jul 2022


Tom from Banwen is a keen gardener and has some great tips for you.

With food prices at an all-time high, growing your own not only saves money but helps your wellbeing too.

Bearing in mind the saying ‘eat a rainbow’, I’ve planted curly greens, red and green broccoli and black kale, all of
which will crop throughout the year.

This season I’ve sown salad greens, spring onions and radish using seed strips bought from Lidl. I plant the seed
strip half an inch deep, cover with soil, press down and water thoroughly. The seeds in the strip come ready spread
out so no need for transplanting after germination. The paper strip then disintegrates into mould in the soil, and
re-planting at three weekly intervals ensures a continuous crop. Really easy to use and worth trying if you are new
to gardening. I’ve grown more flowers from last years seeds so look forward to seeing how they turn out.

It is surprising how many flowers are edible, been used for ages in cooking or as food decorations and this has dated as far back as 3000 BC.

Today, many fine restaurants in the UK are using more and more edible flowers to enhance salads with colour, texture and flavours, so I’ll try that in the summer months. If you plan to do the same, always do your research as some flowers can be poisonous. 

Herbs are always a great thing to grow as they can add so much flavour to your cooking. However, I never have much luck with parsley but have some tips this year to help. As the herb is slow to germinate, it can be killed by mould in the soil, so pouring boiling water on it beforehand should stop this.

A new herb I’m trying this year is chervil, a lovely sweet flavour with a touch of aniseed. Again, for a continuous supply sow in two or three weekly intervals. The flavour is particularly delicious in egg dishes or as a herb butter for fish or potatoes.