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Isolation gardening: How to grow your own veg and summer flowers

Whilst the Coronavirus may mean we are all confined to our homes, now is the perfect time to dust off your old gardening gloves, get out the weed killer, and add some gardening fun back into life.

Gardening doesn't have to be boring, and we're here to help guide you through homemade vegetable growing, along with tips on how to stop garden pests ruining your landscape, and our recommendations on the best flowers to start growing in time for summer.

So what are you waiting for? Get your spades at the ready and dig in to our isolation gardening guide for beginners. 

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What vegetables should I grow?

What vegetables should I grow?

Quick-Grow Vegetables

A common problem when it comes to gardening and growing your own vegetables is that growers often get bored if they don’t see results quickly. So If you’re new to growing your own vegetables then you’re best starting off with some quick-grow products that will provide results within a few weeks. From sowing to harvest the majority of the veg listed below will take around one month, perfect if you’re new to gardening or simply want to see results quickly. 

Here are our favourite fast-growing vegetables to try for yourself at home:

Radishes

Plant to harvest time: 25 days

Radishes aren’t everyone's favourites vegetable, but with a complete harvest time of just 25 days, along also being incredibly easy to grow, they are a brilliant first-growers vegetable to practice with. 

Simply place your seeds in a pot, just beneath the top layer of soil, space roughly 2.5cm apart from one another, feed and water, and watch them grow. The seedlings will start to sprout within three to five days and will be at full majority after 25 days. Just make sure to harvest the roots before they get too large. 

Salad Leaves

Plant to harvest time: 21 days

As we enter summer, salad leaves are a popular dish addition with many of us looking to have a healthier diet as we try to achieve our desired summer bodies. But instead of purchasing your salad at the shops, you can now grow your fresh salad leaves in just 21 days. 

Now you’ll need some space in your garden, roughly one metre for a small harvest, and then all you have to do is simply place a couple of seeds underneath a thin layer of soil, approximately four to five seeds in a metred space, add water and watch them grow into delicious salad leaves. 

If it’s particularly hot outside then you’ll need to water more frequently but checking the dryness of the soil each day should be a good measure. 

Baby Carrots

Plant to harvest time: 30 days

Baby carrots are delicious and can be eaten as a quick snack or used as an ingredient in a variety of dishes. Fortunately, they are also super quick and easy to grow yourself. Simply purchase some baby carrot seeds, plant them in the ground, water frequently and within 30 days you’ll have delicious fresh home-grown baby carrots. 

Just make sure you use quality dirt in order to get the best results. 

How can I keep pests away?

How can I keep pests away?

Now whilst we all enjoy delicious fresh vegetables, the problem with growing them yourself is that so do many of the insects that occupy our gardens with slugs and snails common culprits.

There’s nothing worse for a gardener when you’ve put loads of hard work and hours into growing your own vegetables, only to find that when it comes to harvesting, your veg has been ruined by some pesky garden pests. 

But fear not, because we’re here to give you our top tips and tricks on how to protect your garden from pests.

Introduce frogs and toads to your garden

Now, this may sound like a strange move but bear with us. Frogs and toads diets consist of insects and creepy critters, making them the ideal bodyguard for your vegetables. 

Now we’re not telling you to go and capture frogs and toads from the local ponds to place in your garden, but simply making a small toad house from an upside-down plant pot with a bowl of water inside, is an easy and natural way of attracting them to your garden. 

Once there, you’ll notice your pest problems reduce as the frogs and toads devour your pesky pests. 

Attract beneficial insects

For all the insects that will ruin your hard work, there are also insects that will help, and by attracting some of these beneficial insects to your garden, you’ll notice a reduction in vegetable eating pests allowing your harvest to be more productive. 

Not all insects are bad for your garden, and in fact many of them are the perfect pest control with the likes of ladybugs, dragonfly’s, and honeybees all perfect at removing pesky critters from your vegetable patches. 

Use natural pesticide

Making your own pesticide is another effective way of protecting your plants from garden critters. Simply make up a bottle of your own garlic or salt spray, apply frequently to your vegetables, and you’ll notice a reduction in the number of pest infestations. 

What summer flowers should I start growing?

What summer flowers should I start growing?

As summer approaches, now is the perfect time of year to get your garden in top tip shape and ready for the hot sunny weather. 

As we leave behind the bleak winter months, summer is all about injecting an explosion of colour into your surroundings. So whether you’re an experienced gardener or are new to the world of daffodils and roses, take a look at our easy to plant summer flowers below. 

Sunflowers

Grow time: 80 to 120 days

Sunflowers are the iconic flower of summer with their broad yellow face and beautifully bright petals certain to put a smile on your face. Sunflowers love the sunshine and will even move their head to follow the path of the sun throughout the day. 

Sunflowers are remarkably tough flowers and will grow in most types of soil as long as it isn’t waterlogged. Just make sure that they have access to good sunlight and watch your seeds blossom into beautiful sunflowers. 

Sweet Peas

Grow time: 3 months

Now if you’re going to plant Sweet Peas then you need to make sure you have space because these beautiful flowers can grow up to two metres high. That being said this beautiful loving flower will inject some stunning pinks and purples into any garden. 

Sweet Peas have that name for their sweet and light-scented smell and are a brilliant flower to use if you’re wanting to add that summery feeling to your garden. 

You can plant them into a pot to begin with and then transfer them to soil once they begin sprouting, or if it's sunny outside you can sow them directly into the soil. Just make sure to germinate your seeds in moist kitchen roll in a warm environment first before planting. 

Lilies

Grow time: 30 to 45 days

Lilies are a beautiful flower that everyone will have come across at some time or other. They also happen to be amazing summer plants that are easy to grow if you’re new to gardening. These trumpet-shaped flowers are planted as bulbs and can be grown in containers or your flowerbed. 

They’re also sturdy and do well in tough conditions making them perfect for the sometimes temperamental British summer. To get the best out of your lilies, plant them in direct sunlight and make sure their roots are embedded in fairly moist soil. 

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