Growing enough food to feed my family

Last year I set myself the New Years Resolution of getting outside more, even in bad weather. I wanted to get outside more by myself as well as with the kids. I ended up running my first 10k as an ambassador for Women’s Running UK and starting a veggie plot. This year I know I’ll continue to get outside just as much, though I have different challenges now that I’m at work 4 days a week. My main aim is to get my veggie plot as productive as I can, creating at least one meal a week out of ingredients I’ve grown (more in summer, hopefully).

At a time when air pollution is in the news alongside a courgette shortage and Brexit causing prices of fruit and veg to increase, this is also my way of making sure what I eat is as environmentally friendly as possible. That’s not to say I won’t keep buying blueberries for the kids in winter – obviously I will – but at least growing my own keeps me in tune with where my food is coming from and what tastes best when. Almost everything tastes better when it’s freshly picked.

I currently grow a little bit in my own garden and in a few beds at the community garden. I’ve got quite a few strawberry plants, a rhubarb plant, I’m growing garlic, turnips, kale and purple sprouting broccoli as well as a few herbs – lavendar, mint and chives.

Last year my most productive plants were my courgettes, we use this as spaghetti and also in my artichoke stir fry so I’d be happy if we got so much again this year. Peas were a big hit with Annie – we had some growing at the community garden and some in our back garden which she loved. I’m planning to do the same again this year.

I’ve bought quite a lot of seeds and couldn’t wait to get started so there’s quite a few seedlings on my windowsill already. There’s a lot of space at the community garden so I’ve bought enough squash and pumpkin seeds to get a good patch going. Even if I end up growing far too many for us to eat, I can share with the other gardeners down there. I’ve also got multi-coloured carrots, beetroots, popping corn and sweetcorn, french beans, shallots, cucamelon, tomatoes and lots of flowers too. I’ve also got seeds for asparagus and artichoke plants – planning ahead for next year, because we eat this a lot.

I’m going to be updating regularly on my instagram but will do seasonal updates on here too. Let me know what you’ve got growing, I love hearing about garden plans!