We all know what they are. Most of us have probably eaten some at one time or another. But how easy are they to grow?
Very, according to Kevin Whorley and Ross, who offered to come and teach us some of the basics in March.
Kevin, who looks after the gardens at Ashville College, brought a wide range of equipment, including pots, compost and seeds, to show us how to get started. We learned about which kinds of potatoes to grow, what formation to plant different kinds of seeds in, and what to do if your courgettes start to look a bit floppy.
Skillfully sidestepping the minefield of innuendo that is the world of vegetable gardening, Kevin managed to impart a wide range of knowledge in a relatively short space of time – despite initially claiming he only likes lawns and hanging baskets. Ross also chipped in with plenty of helpful advice from his years of experience running Brookside Nursery on Leeds Road in Pannal. He also kindly provided a £25 voucher for our first-ever raffle, which went down extremely well.
There were plenty of questions afterwards, too – ranging from scabby potatoes to companion planting – which were all answered thoughtfully, with lots of detail. There was even a factsheet to take home afterwards for a bit of support when we were left to our own devices.
Freshly armed with our knowledge of how to become expert vegetable growers, the Spa Sweethearts will no doubt be producing some bumper crops of potatoes, peas, onions, tomatoes, cucumbers and lots more. And if it all goes wrong, never mind – as Kevin and Ross said, it’s all about trying, getting it wrong, and having another go!