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From Garden To Plate

Gardening is one of British people’s favourite activities. Statistics show that 87% of UK households have a garden (UK Census, 2021); not everyone, however, grows food plants there. Only one-third of UK residents cultivate their food crops in 2022. YouGov for the Horticultural Trade Association conducted a survey (October 2022) highlighting how ‘62% of respondents who took part in the survey use their garden spaces for growing plants, flowers or trees, whilst 49% use them to feed or watch wildlife.’ (Horticulture magazine, 2024).

In the UK, 36% of individuals grow their own herbs, fruit, or vegetables in their garden. At the same time, 1 in 8 individuals has no access to a private outdoor space (1 in 5 in London). In this case, though, people still can grow their food using containers and pots at home, on balconies or on roof terraces.

Modern technologies such as IoT can help easily and effectively manage your private garden, either outside or indoors. The heating system of your house can be set to work autonomously, according to external temperatures and indoor requirements. A monitoring system can be organised for your garden likewise. Farmer Charlie sensors can be placed into the soil in your garden, allotment, or house pot to monitor soil conditions and the surrounding environment while you sit at your office desk or drink a much-needed morning coffee in the kitchen. Using this device, you will not need to closely examine your plots and pots all the time. All you do is check the figures shown on your phone/tablet app to know exactly when you should water the plants and which inputs to add if required. For further information on how Farmer Charlie helps you grow vegs, just send us an email!

If you are just making your first steps into home gardening, we have prepared a list of easy-to-grow plants that do not require much effort.

1.     Herbs

Basil, mint, and chives are herbaceous companions that flourish in containers or on windowsills. These aromatic wonders not only elevate your culinary creations but also require minimal care.

2.     Leafy greens

Spinach, kale, and lettuce are verdant delights that thrive in both garden beds and pots. With consistent watering and sunlight, these leafy greens can grace your meals with freshness.

3.     Cherry tomatoes

Compact and prolific, cherry tomatoes are perfect for home gardens. Placed on a sunny spot and with regular pruning, you can relish the sweet burst of flavour that only freshly picked tomatoes can offer.

4.     Strawberries

Ideal for container gardening, strawberries reward your patience with sweet, succulent berries. Their cascading growth adds a decorative touch to your living space.

If you are ready to spend more time and effort on your home garden or want to face new challenges, choose one of the following plants:

1.     Bell Peppers

While bell peppers require a bit more attention, the satisfaction of growing your colourful ones is unparalleled. Give them warmth and well-draining soil, and watch your efforts transform into crisp, homegrown peppers.

2.     Cucumbers

Cucumbers love sunlight and a bit of space to sprawl. With a trellis for support, these crunchy vegetables can become a staple in your salads and snacks, adding a refreshing crunch to every bite.

3.     Carrots

Patience is a virtue when growing carrots. With loose, well-tilled soil, these root vegetables reward your efforts with vibrant orange hues and a sweet, earthy flavour.

4.     Blueberries

Blueberries, although demanding acidic soil, repay your care with antioxidant-rich berries. With the right conditions, you can enjoy harvesting these tiny, nutrient-packed delights.

Home gardening is rewarding but is also a good start for a healthy lifestyle, as you will eat your personally grown organic food. This game is worth playing, and growing food with Farmer Charlie will be even easier and more enjoyable.

Let’s inspire each other! Share the list of plants you grow or intend to grow this year in the comments.

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