There’s a multitude of reasons you might want to grow your own food. From saving a few quid on your weekly supermarket shop to having pesticide-free veggies, or to start a hobby where you can catch some more sun. You might even have heard that growing your own produce can result in far more nutritious meals than if you used store-bought ingredients. Whatever your reason for wanting to grow your own fruit and vegetables, we’ve got some quick tips to help you get started right away.
Grow Your Own Walnuts
They may not be a fruit or vegetable, but walnuts are highly nutritious, can reduce your blood pressure and are a good place to start with your home-grown food. Take a whole walnut, add a splash of water and wrap the little guy in some tissue to keep it moist for about a week. Once you see it sprouting, you can plant it in some damp soil.
The same goes for dragonfruit, though it’s a slightly messier process to start with. Scoop out some of the fruit, take some netting from a loofa (be honest, you don’t really use it) and wrap it around the fruit. Now squeeze. The seeds will ooze out and you can dab them onto a tissue.
Spray a small amount of water to keep the seeds damp. They should only need about 4 days to sprout, after which you can plant them. Watermelons work to this timescale too – though you can just pick off the seeds.
Getting to the Root of the Matter
Growing your own produce doesn’t vary all that much between different foods. For carrots, all you need is the thick end. Which is great, since we don’t tend to eat that bit anyway. Just place it in a bowl of water, and once the roots have grown back you can proceed to bury it in soil.
Leeks and green onions work in pretty much the same way, but the latter doesn’t need to be moved into any soil.
Garlic can be grown similarly. Place a clove just over a glass of water, roots downwards, facing the water. You don’t quite want the roots to touch the water, keep them just shy of it. After a few days, fresh roots should have grown and, you guessed it, they’re ready for planting.
Lastly, there’s plenty of other fruit and veg you can grow yourself by simply planting and nurturing them.
For example, cut a few slices off a strawberry (the outside, where all the seeds are) and cover them in damp soil. This is an excellent way or cutting down waste for those picky eaters who aren’t keen on the texture. Tomatoes, sweetcorn, and even bell peppers can be regrown like this.
Are you a fan of chamomile tea? If you can bear to surrender a bag, tear it open and plant any flower heads you find. These aren’t for mere novices though, as the chamomile plant demands 16 hours of sunlight each day. Compared to the tomatoes needs – 6-8 hours of sunlight – that’s quite a heavy toll.
It’s easier than most think to begin to grow your own produce. And a lot of these examples are foods you might use to supplement an elimination diet. Which will you plant first? Let us know down in the comments.