The Vegetable Growing Starter Kit is packed full of the promise of a bountiful harvest of deliciousness. Once you have grown your own tasty vegetables you can then enjoy the fruits of your labour.
Box includes: 6 x compost discs, 1 x pack each of the following seeds, plant markers, pencil, 5-step illustrated instruction leaflet and recipe card.
Carrots are high in anti-oxidant beta carotene which converts to Vitamin A. This variety is fast maturing and great for sowing early. Vibrant orange colour and sweet to taste.
Highly nutritious,dark leaved spinach with a beautiful red stem. Slightly sweeter in flavour and therefore great when grown to baby leaf.
SWISS CHARD Bright Lights
Packs a nutritional punch. With a lovely mild flavour. Large green / bronze leaves with rainbow of colours on stems.
Sowing outside: from April to June. Sow thinly into growing site ¾ “ deep. Sow carefully so you don’t have to thin out seedlings later. Grow in a weed free,light, well-drained soil. Great for growing in containers if you have limited space. Grow alongside spring onions, leeks or mint to help deter carrot root fly.
Uses: Soups,stews, casseroles,vegetable dishes,cakes and salads.
TIP: Carrots don’t like freshly manured soils, if preparing a veg bed, best advised to do so the previous autumn before sowing in spring.
Dwarf French Bean ‘Speedy’
Sowing outside: From April onwards when has soil warmed up. Sow 2 seeds 2” deep and 9” apart. Water regularly during and after the flowering period and keep area around plant free from weeds. Support the plants with twig / bamboo canes to prevent the plants from falling over.
Harvest: regularly to get the best yield. Pick or cut the beans off the stem with a pair of scissors being careful not the dislodge the stem. a couple of times a week Once harvested, feed the plants with a liquid vegetable feed available at your local garden centre / diy store. This will promote a second crop – although it won’t be as big as the first crop.
Uses: Garlic butter or sesame seeds. With other seasonal vegetables,broths, chicken, meats, stir-fries, fish & potatoes.
Tip: If you have a large harvest, these beans are great to freeze. Wash and trim the ends off the pods and blanch in boiling water for 2-3 minutes. Freeze in a polythene bag and your beans can be stored for up to 12 months.
Peas ‘Rondo’ (pisum sativum)
Sowing outside: Direct sow from end March-June once the soil has warmed up. Sow in well drained soil in full sun. Sow seeds 1 1/2 “ deep and up to 30” apart. Sow every 10 days for successional crops.
Uses: Flowers for decorating cakes,fish dishes & salads. Maincrop for salads,pastas, soups,cured meats, herbs and other spring vegetables,seafoods and purees.
TIP: Water regularly & thoroughly when in flower to improve your yield; Harvest approx. 14 weeks after sowing.
Sowing outside: April to mid-June and Aug-Sept. Sow seeds thinly 0.5” deep and up to 12” apart. Harvest as required only picking a few leaves from each plant. Water well during dry spells. Prefers well drained soil in full sun. Keep the area weed free and remove any flower heads that appear.
Harvest: Pull off the outer leaves without disturbing the roots when they are large enough to use. It’s best not to wait until they are fully mature.
Uses: Steamed, salads, pastas, risottos,vegetables, soups, fish, sandwiches, wraps & meats.
Tip: Great with Halloumi, feta or combined with ricotta or parmesan.
Swiss Chard Bright Lights
Sowing outside: From April to August. Sow in either in a moist seedbed, pot or container in full sun / partial shade. Sow thinly ½” deep and up to 12” apart. Water regularly especially during dry periods.
Uses: Use baby-leaf in salads (raw), steam, stir-fries, casseroles, soups & pastas.
Tip: To use as baby-leaf harvest after approx. 50 days.
Winter Minestrone Soup
- 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 medium carrots, chopped
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 garlic clove, peeled and chopped
- 800g swiss chard, shredded & stalks chopped
- 300g tomatoes, chopped
- 1 celery heart, thinly sliced
- 2 leeks, trimmed and sliced
- 700ml chicken or veg stock
- sea salt & black pepper
- freshly grated parmesan
- 1 tablespoon fresh basil, torn
- 50g parsley
- optional: 100ml dry white wine
Heat oil in a pan over medium heat, add 1/2 the vegetables chopped garlic clove and fry gently for 10-15 mins, stirring occasionally. Remove to a bowl. Add more oil if necessary and fry remaining vegetables as before. Return all the vegetables to the pan, season with salt and pepper and add stock. Bring to boil, cover and simmer for 10-15 minutes until tender. Grate parmesan and serve in a small bowl to accompany soup. Add the chopped parsley and basil to the soup and serve immediately.
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