I love growing vegetables and I actually grow all of my own in my garden at home. For the last couple of years I have been challenging myself to grow some giant veggies and enter them into the local show.

Last weekend was Weston and Weedon Lois Horticultural show, where I came in second in the members category for my leeks. You can see me sporting my giant onions on the left, which didn’t quite make the cut. Unfortunately I didnt pick them early enough to dry out properly before the show. Lesson learned…. either get a greenhouse or pick them earlier.

In light of this event calling an end to the vegetable picking season I thought i’d let you in on a few pearls of wisdom for getting your garden turned around to plant some delicious winter vegetables to go in your home made winter stew.

Stuck for what to grow? Here’s what you can plant now….

  • Lettuce: If you plant these as plugs/plants now and we have warm autumn you can hopefully pick and enjoy them before the frost.
  • Carrots: If you plant now you’ll have time to pick them for your lovely Christmas dinner.
  • Spinach: Plant now and it will grow through the winter and you can pick it when you need it.
  • Cabbage/Calabrese/purple sprouting broccoli: plant these now and pick them in the early spring – they’re very hardy but watch out for pigeons…and caterpillars…..and slugs.
  • Pak Choi: Plant now as a plug and pick in the late winter/spring.

Whatever you plant make sure you prepare properly. Here are the two main things you should do:

  • Rake away all debris from the previous crop and stick it in your compost bin.
  • Incorporate last years compost into your soil and make sure you water your plants in well.

I also thought id let you know what we’ve got going on here at the Bell Plantation in the next month.

On the 25th of September the Bell Plantation will be holding a night of funk, soul and boogie music with the swinging “Ross Jarrett Band”. If your into a good boogy then you’ll love this band, as Royal College of music student Ross Jarret will really get you on your feet and dancing. We’ll also be throwing in a pig roast to feed your appetite and a free drink to get rid of your cold feet on the dance floor. Tickets are £20. To book your ticket call us: 01327 354126.

We’ve also got a special guest coming in on the 15th of September. He’s one of Brtains best loved comedic actors Roger Lloyd Pack. Famous as being Trigger in Only Fools and Horses and the rather vile farmer Owen in A Vicar of Dibley, Roger will be hosting a dinner in the Plantation Cafe. Tickets will be £35 and include a delicious 2-course dinner of main and deserts. Roger will speak at dinner and will be happy to socialise with guests. To Book your tickets call 01933 441773.

Ashley Warren

Ashley Warren has lived and loved horticulture and agriculture all his life; he had his first greenhouse at the age of 10 and his first cow when he was 16. He started landscaping in 1984 mainly in Milton Keynes and then all over the country. He moved to Daventry Road Farmhouse in 1987 and has developed Bell Plantation Garden Centre in Towcester, Northants over the last 30 years.

Leave a Reply