There is a rebirth of home grown produce that is spreading across the UK… people are really digging into (get it?) growing their own fruit and veg. Â I must admit I am starting to become one of them! Â So I am going to offer my insights into how you can grow your own stuff Â starting with the first thing I grew, on my window ledge, chilly-peppers.
To grow anything you need seeds. Â Now you could go and buy a packet, but there isn’t really any point when you have a whole fruit and veg section in your super market. Â Take a chilly variety you like, and dry out the chilly. Â Once it is dry you can take the seeds out and store them as long as you like.
To plant your seeds you need some good soil and a small pot. Â You can actually get small bio-degradable cardboard style pots from a garden centre or such, that will let you grow a single seedling into something a little bigger. Â For my experiment of peppers I just plopped a load of seeds in to a small plant pot, and 2 germinated. Â I would not recommend this as peppers grow really big, and you need toÂ separateÂ them before their roots entangle, I am now stuck with 2 plants in one pot and I’m not sure how well that is going to work.
Once you have your pot set up push the seeds into the ground, say about a centimetre and then cover them over. Â I kept mine on the window ledge so they have plenty of light and kept the soil moist, like chocolate cake my farmer friend advised.
if you have more than 2 seedsÂ germinateÂ make sure youÂ separateÂ them if they are not already in separate pots. Â I had to cut mine back a lot too as it was just growing too high and thick, don’t be too scared of doing this as it will start to re-grow leaves and branches no problem. Â To actually get any fruit you need to do some pollination, I used a Cotton bud stick thing (I’m a bloke, I don’t know the name) and helped the plants make sweet love. Â Most of the flowers after pollination will fall off, but some will start to grow into the fruit. Â How exciting!
I harvested my first crop of 2 red chilly peppers the other day and took them to my parents, the turn read quite quickly when ripe, so just be patient if you have red chillies. Â The funny thing is myÂ wifeÂ doesn’tÂ really like chillies, but I just thought it was a good experiment :)
I think next we are going to go for other indoor experiments,Â definitelyÂ peppers – theÂ saladÂ varietyÂ and something else we have not decided on yet. Â Stay tuned for more how to grow stuff!
Here are some pictures!