Kitchen garden offers plenty for your table

Published 12:21pm 15 September 2018

Kitchen garden offers plenty for your table
Words by Kylie Knight

There's nothing like eating the produce you've grown in your own backyard and the vegie patch seems to be enjoying a revival.

Gena Campbell at the Redcliffe Garden Centre says growing numbers of people cultivate fruit, vegetables , and herbs in exchange for old-fashioned values.

“A lot of things in life today are false, gardening is not,” Gena says. “There’s pride in growing something that you’re eating.”

Gena says you don't need to be a green thumb to build an healthy kitchen garden, and you don't need a huge patch of vegetables to make it worth it.

She says people are becoming creative in making the most of their space — with containers, green pallet walls, old soft drink bottles, troughs and even bicycle wheels as vehicles for fruit and vegetable growth. They research online, and they copy the option that works best for them.

Gena says raised planter boxes are perfect for those who find it hard to bend down, and even a self-contained version with irrigation system and cover is available to keep out pests.

He says people grow a large range of produce — all from herbs to tomatoes, oranges and berries. Bananas even made a return to the backyard, with cavendish plants once again available.

Gena says people who like kitchen garden plants inside should buy two of each one and rotate them so they spend some time outside in the sun and rain.

“If you do that, you’ve got a plant that’s really happy and doing well,” she explains.

Fruit trees, as well as passionfruit vines, finger limes, figs, and compact lemon and lime plants are common. With these you don't need an over-sized pot and they yield a lot of berries. Gena says that extracting half the fruit when the plant is young is a good idea to give it a chance to thrive, otherwise it may stun growth.

Growing your own produce gives you the best ingredients for cooking at home.

“There really is nothing nicer than herbs and vegies picked from the garden. They taste better, they taste sweeter,” Gena says.

TIPS FOR SUCCESS

● Get creative with the space you have using pots, wall gardens and anything else you can get your hands on. Search the internet for inspiration

● Get the balance right when fertilising your plants

● Rotate plants you’re growing inside so they enjoy some sunlight

● Plant a variety of crops so you always have something to harvest

● Plan your garden and seek advice before you get started

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