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Potato Days And Seed Swaps 2012

Posted By On January 3, 2012

Potato Days are great events for kitchen gardeners and allotmenteers to attend. There are a large number of different potato varieties available including heritage varieties and most potato days offer individual seed potatoes for sale which is ideal if you are growing in containers or space is limited.

Here is a list of potato days and seed swaps taking place across the country during January, February and March 2012.

Potato Days – January

  • Potato Day – Bridport

    St Mary’s Church House
    DT6 3NN
    Saturday January 14th. 10.00am – 2.30pm.

  • Seed Potato Week – Wantage

    Charlton Park Garden Centre
    Charlton Road
    OX12 8EP
    Starts Sunday January 15th.

  • Potato Day – Swindon

    Swindon Allotment Society
    Gorse Hill Community Centre
    Chapel Street
    SN2 8DA
    Saturday January 21st. 11.00am – 2.00pm

  • Potato Festival Weekend – Cheltenham

    Dundry Nurseries and Garden Centre
    Bamfurlong Lane
    GL51 6SL
    Saturday January 21st, Sunday January 22nd.

  • Potato Fair & Seedy Sunday – London

    Sydenham School
    Dartmouth Road
    SE26 4RD
    Sunday January 22nd. 10.00am – 3.00pm

  • Potato Day – Bollington, Cheshire

    Bollington & District Horticultural Society
    Bollington Civic Hall
    Hurst Lane/Palmerston Street
    SK10 5JX.
    Saturday January 28th 10.15am – 12.30pm

  • Potato Day – Chesterfield

    Transition Chesterfield
    The Pavements
    Saturday January 28th 10.00am – 2.00pm

  • Potato Day – Nottingham

    Nottingham Organic Gardeners
    Sherwood United Reformed Church
    1 Edwards Lane
    NG5 3AA.
    Saturday 28th January 10.30am – 2.00pm

  • Potato Day – Marshfield

    Marshfield Community Centre
    The Hayfield
    SN14 8PG
    Saturday January 28th. 10.30am – 2.30pm

  • Potato Day – Lancaster

    Transition City Lancaster
    The Friends Meeting House
    Meeting House Lane
    LA1 1TX
    Saturday January 28th 12noon – 3.00pm

  • Potato Day – Hampshire

    Testbourne Community Centre,
    Micheldever Road,
    RG28 7JF
    Saturday January 28th, Sunday January 29th 10.00am – 3.00pm

  • Potato Weekend – Wirral, Cheshire

    Gordale Nurseries Ltd.
    Chester High Road
    South Wirral
    CH64 8TF
    Saturday January 28th, Sunday January 29th. 11.00am – 4.00pm.

  • National Potato Day & Heritage Seed Library Seed Swap – Coventry

    Garden Organic
    Garden Organic Ryton
    CV8 3LG
    Members only – Saturday January 28th. 10.00am – 4.00pm.
    Open to the public – Sunday January 29th. 10.00am – 4.00pm.

  • Potato Day – Ramsbury, Wiltshire

    Ramsbury Horticultural Society
    Ramsbury Memorial Hall
    High Street
    SN8 2PB
    Sunday January 29th. 10.30am – 2.30pm.

  • Potato Day – Middlesbrough

    Durham Organic Gardeners Association
    Nature’s World
    Ladgate Lane
    TS5 7YN
    Sunday January 29th. 10.00am – 1.00pm.

  • Special Spud Week – Wiltshire

    Courtens Garden Centre
    Romsey Road
    SP5 2AN
    Monday January 30th until Sunday February 5th 10.00am – 4.00pm

Seed Swaps – January

  • Seed Swap – Hampshire

    Hampshire Organic Gardening Group
    Whitchurch Community School
    Micheldever Road
    RG27 7JF
    Saturday January 28th, Sunday January 29th. 10.00am – 3.00pm.

  • Seedy Sunday – Trumpington, Cambridge

    Trumpington Allotment Association
    Trumpington Village Hall
    CB2 9HZ
    Sunday January 29th. 1.30pm -4.00pm

Potato Days – February

  • Potato Day – Shropshire

    Shropshire Organic Gardeners Potato Day
    Montford Parish Hall
    Montford Bridge
    SY4 1AD
    Saturday February 4th 9.00am – 3.00pm

  • Potato Day – Urchfont

    Urchfont Potato Day
    Urchfont Village Hall
    Urchfont nr. Devizes
    SN10 4QU
    Saturday February 4th 10.30am – 2.00pm

  • Potato Day – Eggsford

    Eggesford Garden and Country Centre
    Nr Chulmleigh
    EX18 7QU
    Saturday February 4th 9.00am – 5.00pm

  • Potato Day – County Durham

    Durham Organic Gardeners Association
    Bowburn community Centre,
    Durham Road,
    County Durham.
    Saturday February 4th 10.00am – 1.00pm

  • Potato Day – Stroud

    Transition Stroud
    Merrywalks Shopping Centre
    GL5 1RR
    Saturday February 4th 9.00am – 2.30pm

  • Potato Day – Leeds

    Joe’s Potato Day
    The Armscliffe Hall
    Harrogate Road
    LS17 0EG
    Sunday February 5th 11.30am – 3.30pm

  • Potato Day – Abergavenny

    McDonalds Nursery Garden Centre
    Evesham Gardens
    Church Lane
    NP7 9LF
    Tuesday February 7th 10.00am – 4.00pm

  • Potato Day – Dorset

    Drimpton Potato Day
    Drimpton Village Hall
    Nr Beaminster
    DT8 3RF
    Saturday February 11th 10.30am – 3.30pm

  • Potato Day – Cambridgeshire

    Cambridgeshire Self Sufficiency Group
    Huntingdon Commemoration Hall
    High Street
    PE29 3AQ
    Saturday February 11th from 10.30am

  • Potato Day – Shropshire

    Shropshire Wildlife Trust
    Visitor Centre
    Abbey Foregate,
    SY2 6ND
    Saturday February 11th 10.00am – 3.00pm

  • Potato Day & Seed Swap – Exeter

    St Matthews Church Hall
    (by the triangle car park off Heavitree Road)
    Lower Summerlands
    EX1 2LW
    Saturday February 11th 11.00am – 2.00pm

  • Potato Day – East Anglia

    Suffolk Organic Gardeners
    Mid-Suffolk Showground
    Stonham Barns
    Pettaugh Road
    Stonham Aspal
    Nr Stowmarket
    IP14 6AT
    Saturday February 11th 9.30am – 1.30pm

  • Potato Weekend – Buckinghamshire

    Buckingham Garden Centre
    Tingewick Road
    MK18 4AE
    Saturday, February 11th 10:00am – 4.00pm
    Sunday, February 12th 10.00am – 4:00pm

  • Potato Day – Nelson, Lancashire

    Pendle Community High School
    Pendle Vale Campus
    Oxford Road
    BB9 8LF
    ( in aid of Pendle Community High)
    Sunday February 12th from 9.00am

  • Potato Day – Somerset

    The Constitutional Club
    Station Road
    Castle Cary
    BA7 7PF
    Sunday February 12th 10.30am – 2.30pm

  • Potato Day – Mold

    Church Hall
    King Street
    CH7 1LA
    North Wales.
    Saturday February 18th 9.30am – 1.00pm

  • Potato Day – Codford

    Codford Village Hall (off A36)
    BA12 0LD
    Saturday February 18th 10.30am – 2.00pm

  • Potato Day – West Yorkshire

    West Yorkshire Organic Group
    Shipley College
    Exhibition Hall
    Exhibition Road
    West Yorkshire.
    BD18 3JW
    Saturday February 18th 10.00am – 2.00pm

  • Potato Day – Manchester

    Hulme Community Garden Centre
    28 Old Birley Street
    M15 5RG
    Sunday February 19th 11.00am – 4.00pm

  • Potato Day & Seed Swap – Mere, Wiltshire

    The Grove Buildings
    Church Street
    BA12 6DS
    Sunday February 19th 10.30am – 2.00pm

  • Potato Day – South East Essex

    South East Essex Organic Gardeners & Leigh-on-Sea Allotments
    Growing Together Gardens
    47 Fairfax Drive
    SS0 9AG
    Saturday February 25th 10.00am – 2.00pm

  • Potato Day – Hebden Bridge

    Calder Valley Organic Gardeners
    The Church Of The Good Shepherd
    Royal Fold
    New Road
    Hebden Bridge.
    HX7 5DZ
    Saturday February 25th 10.00am – 3.00pm

  • Potato Day – London

    Garden Museum
    Lambeth Palace Road
    SE11 7LB
    Saturday February 25th 10.30am – 4.00pm

  • Potato Day – Ross-Shire

    Transition Black Isle
    North Kessock Village Hall
    North Kessock
    IV1 3XN
    Saturday February 25th 1.00pm – 4.30pm

  • Potato Day – Pewsey

    Pewsey Garden Club
    Bouverie Hall
    North Street
    SN9 5ES
    Sunday February 26th 10.00am -2.00pm

  • Potato Day – Cumbria

    The Parish Hall
    CA7 8EU
    Sunday February 26th 10.00am – 3.00pm

  • Potato Day – Glasgow

    Glasgow Allotments
    The Pearce Institute
    Govan Road
    G51 3UU
    Sunday February 26th 11.00am – 3.00pm

  • Potato Day – Edinburgh

    Bridgend Allotments
    41 Old Dalkeith Road
    EH16 4TE
    Sunday February 26th 11.00am – 3.00pm

  • Potato Day – Gateshead

    The Hop Garden
    1 The Crescent Allotments
    off Bute Road South
    High Spen
    NE39 2AW
    Sunday February 26th 1.00pm – 3.00pm

  • Potato Day & Seed Swap – Frome

    Cheese & Grain
    Market Yard
    Justice Lane
    BA11 1BE
    Sunday February 26th 11.00am – 3.00pm

Seed Swaps – February

  • Seedy Saturday – Lewes

    Lewes Town Hall
    High Street
    East Sussex.
    BN7 2DQ
    Saturday February 4th – 10.00am – 3.00pm

  • Seedy Saturday – Alton

    Alton Methodist Church Hall
    Draymans Way
    GU34 1AU
    Saturday February 4th 10.00am – 12.30pm

  • Seedy Saturday – Totnes

    Birdwood House
    TQ9 5SQ
    Saturday February 4th 11.00am – 3.00pm

  • Seedy Sunday – Brighton & Hove

    Hove Town Hall
    Norton Road
    BN3 3BQ
    Sunday February 5th 10.00am – 4.30pm

  • Super Seed Swap Sunday – Bristol

    The Cube Cinema
    Dove St South
    off King Square
    BS2 8JD
    Sunday February 5th 12noon – 5.00pm

  • Kingston Seed Swap & Seed Potato Fair

    Kingston Permaculture Network
    Kingston Market House
    The Market Place
    Kingston upon Thames
    KT1 1JP
    Sunday February 5th 12noon – 3.00pm

  • Seedy Saturday Spring Fayre – Carmarthenshire

    St Peter’s Hall
    Nott Square
    SA31 1PG
    Saturday February 11th 10.00am – 3.00pm

  • Seedy Saturday – Nottingham

    Stonebridge City Farm
    Stonebridge Road,
    St. Anns,
    NG3 2FR
    Saturday February 11th 11.00am – 3.00pm

  • Seed Swap -Whitstable

    Whitstable Farmers Market
    St Mary’s Hall (Umbrella Centre)
    Oxford Street
    Saturday 11th February 9.30am to 2.00pm

  • Annual Seed Exchange – Cambridge

    Bottisham & District Annual Seed Exchange
    Queen’s Court
    Downing Close
    CB25 9DD
    February 11th 2.00pm to 4.00pm

  • Seedy Saturday – Minehead & Alcombe

    Methodist Church Hall
    38 The Avenue
    TA24 6AZ
    Saturday 11th February 10.00am to 12.00noon

  • Seed Swap, Sowing & Growing – Worthing

    Transition Town Worthing
    Oak Grove College
    The Boulevard
    BN13 1JX
    Saturday February 11th 2.00pm – 5.00pm

  • Seed Swap – Southampton

    The Art House Gallery Café
    178 Above Bar Street
    SO14 7DW
    Saturday February 11th, Sunday 12th Noon – 5.00pm

  • Seedy Sunday – Wiltshire

    St Margaret’s Hall
    Bradford On Avon
    Sunday February 12th 11.00am – 1.00pm

  • Seedy Sunday – Sheffield

    Heeley City Farm
    Richards Road
    S2 3DT
    Sunday February 12th 12noon – 4.00pm

  • Seedy Saturday – Horsham

    Friends Meeting House
    Worthing Road
    RH12 1SL
    Saturday February 18th 10.00am – 2.00pm

  • Seed Swap – Hereford

    St John Methodist Church
    St Owen Street
    Saturday February 18th 10.00am – 2.00pm

  • Seed Swap – Faversham

    Foyer of Faversham Library
    Newton Rd
    ME13 8DY
    Saturday February 18th 10.00am – 12.00noon

  • Seed Swap – Walberswick

    Village Hall
    Saturday February 18th 10.00am to 1.00pm

  • Seed Swap – Bletchley

    Freeman Memorial Methodist Church Hall
    Buckingham Road
    Milton Keynes.
    MK3 5HH
    Saturday February 18th 10.00am – 2.00pm

  • Seed Swap – Holywood, Northern Ireland

    Redburn Community Centre
    Jackson’s Road
    North Down
    BT18 9EZ
    Northern Ireland.
    Sunday February 19th 2.45pm – 5.00pm

  • Seedy Saturday – Cardiff

    Chapter Arts Centre
    Market Road
    CF5 1QE
    Saturday February 25th 10.00am -12.00p.m

  • Seed Swap – Powys

    The Community Garden
    Cwm Harry
    SY16 1DZ
    Saturday February 25th 10.00am – 2.00pm

  • Seedy Saturday – Buxton

    Spring Gardens
    Saturday February 25th 10.00am – 12noon

  • Seedy Sunday – Machynlleth, Powys

    Dyfi Valley Seed Savers
    Ysgol Bro Ddyfi
    SY20 8DR
    Sunday February 26th 10.00am – 3.00pm

  • Seed Swap – Arundel

    Norfolk Hall
    Mill Road
    West Sussex.
    Sunday February 26th

Potato Days – March

  • Potato Day & Seed Swap – Newsome, Huddersfield

    Growing Newsome
    Newsome Scout H.Q.,
    Newsome Road South,
    HD4 6JJ
    Saturday March 3rd 10.00am – 3.00pm

  • Potato Day – Rushall

    Rushall and Charlton Potato Day
    Rushall Village Hall
    SN9 6EN
    March 3rd 10.00am – 2.00pm

  • Potato Day – Kelso

    Borders Organic Gardeners
    Springwood Hall
    Springwood Park
    Borders Union Showground
    TD5 8EH
    March 4th 11.00am – 3.00pm

  • Potato Day – Cheshire

    The Marple and District Allotment Association
    Marple Senior Citizens Hall
    Memorial Park
    SK6 6BA
    March 4th 10.00am – 3.00pm

  • Potato Day – Blandford

    Blandford Museum Victorian Garden Club
    Pimperne Village Hall
    nr. Blandford Forum
    DT11 8UJ
    March 4th 10.00am – 2.00pm

  • Potato Day – Dunblane

    Dunblane Gardeners Group & Dunblane Allotment Society
    Dunblane Cathedral Halls
    The Cross
    FK15 0AQ
    March 10th 2.00pm – 4.00pm

  • Potato Day & Seedy Saturday – North East Somerset

    Farmborough Memorial Hall
    Little Lane
    BA2 0AE
    March 10th 10.00am – 2.00pm

  • Potato Day – Damerham

    Damerham Village Hall
    SP6 3HQ
    March 11th 10.30am – 2.30pm

  • Potato Day – Dumfries

    Gardenwise Garden Centre
    Castle Douglas Road
    DG2 8PP
    March 11th 10.00am – 4.00pm

  • Potato Day – Co. Leitrim, Ireland

    The Organic Centre
    Co. Leitrim
    Sunday March 11th 11.00am – 5.00pm

Seed Swaps – March

  • Seed Swap – Argyll

    Kilmartin Museum Cafe
    Kilmartin House Museum
    PA31 8RQ
    Saturday March 3rd 10.00am – 4.00pm

  • Seedy Saturday – Forest Row

    Transition Forest Row
    The Riverview Cafe
    Station Road
    Forest Row
    East Sussex.
    RH18 5DW
    Saturday March 3rd 10.00am – 1.00pm

  • Seed Swap – Oxford

    Barracks Lane Community Gardens
    Barracks Lane
    off Cumberland Road
    OX4 2AP
    Saturday March 3rd – 11.00am – 5.00pm

  • Seedy Sunday – Foxton

    Robert Monk Hall (Foxton Village Hall)
    Middle Street
    LE16 7RE
    Sunday March 4th 2.00pm – 4.00pm

  • Seed Swap – Colwall

    Colwall Village Garden
    Old Church Road
    WR13 6HB
    Sunday March 4th 2.00pm – 4.00pm

  • Seedy Saturday – Ermington

    Ermington School Hall
    South Devon.
    PL21 9NT
    Saturday March 10th 1.00pm – 4.00pm

  • Seedy Saturday – Glastonbury

    United Reformed Church
    High Street
    BA6 9DZ
    Saturday March 10th 1.30pm – 4.00pm

  • Seed Swap – County Mayo, Ireland

    The Good Life Network
    Main Street
    County Mayo
    Sunday March 11th 2.30pm – 4.00pm

  • Seedy Sunday – Sugnall Hall

    Sugnall Hall
    (The Old Hall Kitchen)
    ST21 6NF
    Sunday March 11th 10.00am – 2.00pm

  • Seed Swap – Dolgellau

    Eldon Square
    LL40 1PS
    Sunday March 18th 10.00am to 2.00pm

Vegetable Varieties For Container Gardening – Peppers to Tomatoes

Posted By On April 23, 2011

Many people long to grow their own delicious and extremely fresh vegetables but do not have a garden. There are a number of vegetable varieties specifically bred or suitable for growing in containers on the patio or backyard. Here are some of our favourite varieties.


  • Pepper Gourmet Sweet pepper Gourmet is a dwarf plant with a compact habit that produces a huge crop of gorgeous sweet crispy peppers that turn orange when mature. Gourmet has been awarded the RHS Award Of Garden Merit (AGM) and can be grown outdoors in a sunny sheltered spot.
  • Pepper Gypsy F1 Sweet pepper Gypsy produces a great crop of pointed peppers with an excellent flavour approximately 10cm or 4 inches in length that turn to red when fully mature. Grow outdoors in pots in a very sunny sheltered spot or in either a conservatory or greenhouse. Resistant to tobacco mosaic virus.
  • Pepper Mohawk F1 Absolutely perfect for growing on a patio or in containers as Mohawk is a lovely compact plant producing a good harvest of orange coloured peppers.
  • Pepper Redskin F1 A sister plant to Mohawk with the same compact growing habit producing beautiful red skinned peppers.


  • Pumkin Summer Ball F1 A British bred variety producing up to 20 baby pumpkins on a compact bushy plant making it ideal for growing in containers. The pumpkins can be harvested early as a summer squash or left to mature into 1kg (2lb) summer pumpkins.


  • Radish Cherry Belle A fast maturing globe shaped variety with bright red skins and white flesh which is slow to go woody. Lovely crisp and sweet with a mild flavour.
  • Radish French Breakfast 3 This variety produces red cylindrical roots of a medium length that have a white tip which are crisp but tender and have a mild flavour. Awarded the RHS Award Of Garden Merit (AGM).

Salad Onions / Spring Onions / Green Onions

  • Salad Onion Ishikuro A Japanese bunching onion which does not form bulbs but just gradually grows thicker stems and stands well in the ground. Ishikuro can be harvest through the season from thin salad onions to thicker stemmed salad onions removing the need for successional sowing.
  • Salad Onion White Lisbon One of the traditional bulbing varieties favoured by many gardeners. Successional sowing will provide a crop throughout the season.
  • Salad Onion Deep Purple A vibrant deep red-purple salad onion creating interest to any salad dish.


  • Spinach Rhino F1 A slow bolting variety of spinach producing smooth broad leaves. Rhino is a slower maturing variety which makes it ideal for baby leaves.
  • Spinach Galaxy F1 A mini vegetable variety producing glossy, dark green baby spinach leaves that is fully mildew resistant.


  • Squash Sunburst F1 Sunburst is a summer squash producing beautiful mini, golden yellow coloured fruits with a slight scalloped edge. Extremely tender and tasty simply lightly steam and serve whole. Awarded the RHS Award Of Garden Merit (AGM).
  • Squash Festival This winter squash is a trailing variety that can be left to scramble across the patio or it can be trained up supports where space is limited. Festival produces lovely nutty flavoured grapefruit sized squashes with a pale orange flesh that are great roasted. Stores well.
  • Squash Gem Gem squashes are small, shiny green fruits with a delicious sweet flavour. A winter squash so it will store, very prolific and ideal for growing in containers as the vine can be trained up canes or an obelisk.

Swiss Chard / Seakale Beet

  • Swiss Chard Bright Lights Probably one of the most colourful vegetables for the kitchen garden with stems ranging in colour from red, green, violet, white, pink, gold, orange and yellow. The leaves can be cooked like spinach with the stems needing slightly longer to cook. Awarded the RHS Award Of Garden Merit (AGM).


  • Tomato Ferline F1 Indeterminate (cordon). An extremely high yielding variety that produces very good sized tomatoes with a fabulous flavour over a long season. Ferline is blight tolerant, resistant to fusarium wilt and verticillium wilt. An excellent tomato that can be grown both in the greehouse and outdoors.
  • Tomato Gartenperle Determinate (bush). A trailing variety so ideal for growing in hanging baskets and window boxes. Gartenperle produces a great harvest of red cherry sized juicy tomatoes throughout the season.
  • Tomato Inca F1 Determinate (bush). A plum tomato variety which produces a huge crop of wonderfully tasty plum tomatoes both outdoors and in the greenhouse. The tomatoes have a thick meaty flesh making them excellent for cooking. Tolerance to fusasrium and verticillium wilts.
  • Tomato Balconi Yellow Determinate (bush). This variety will trail when grown in hanging baskets producing a very heavy crop of sweet, delicious yellow cherry tomatoes. A sister plant to Balconi Red.

Vegetable Varieties For Container Gardening – Cucumbers to Peas

Posted By On September 4, 2010

It is not necessary to have an allotment in order to grow your own fresh, tasty vegetables. Having vegetables growing in containers on your backyard or patio is easy and really covenient! Here are some of our recommended varieties that are specifically bred or suitable for growing in containers.


  • Cucumber Marketmore An excellent variety of cucumber for growing outdoors producing good sized juicy cucumbers that are crisp with a fabulous flavour. Awarded the RHS Award Of Garden Merit (AGM).
  • Cucumber Green Fingers F1 These are ideal for the children’s lunch box. Green Fingers produces small finger sized 10cm or 4 inch cucumbers which have a smooth skin and are bitter free.


  • Leek King Richard An ideal variety for growing on the patio producing extra long slim leeks that can be sown direct and do not require earthing up. Grow King Richard leeks close together for delicious baby leeks.
  • Leek Volta F1 An early variety with a good length stem that can be sown direct and used as tasty baby leeks.
  • Leek Tornado Suitable for growing as baby leeks, Tornado produces good long stems that have some rust resistance.


  • Lettuce Little Gem A deliciously sweet and crisp small lettuce with a solid head which is ideal for growing in containers.
  • Lettuce Tom Thumb A compact, small butterhead type lettuce which has lovely, crunchy but soft leaves and is perfect for close spacing.
  • Mixed Salad Leaves Most of the seed suppliers sell packets of mixed salad leaves which are ideal for container growing as a sprinkling of seeds will produce a harvest of various varieties, colours and flavours all in one container.


  • Mangetout Oregon Sugar Pod This variety produces a heavy crop of large mangetout pea pods, also known as snow peas, which are crisp and delicious. The pods are stringless when young and are excellent stir fried. Growing to 90cm or 36 inches simply give the plants some twiggy pea sticks for support.
  • Mangetout Norli Norli is a true French type mangetout pea which produces small dark green pods that taste so sweet and crisp. This variety is resistant to fusarium wilt and grows to 60cm or 24 inches. Again give the plants a little support from twiggy pea sticks.


  • Marrow Baby Bush A bush type marrow plant producing a great harvest of tasty baby marrows which are approximately three quarters the size of standard marrows.

Pak Choi

  • Pak Choi Green Revolution F1 This is a compact variety of pak choi, which is slow to bolt, can be used as a tasty ‘baby leaf’ in salads or the heads can be left to mature.
  • Pak Choi Hanakan F1 When mature Hanakan produces gorgeous green leaf baby heads of Pak Choi which are fabulous in stir fries.


  • Pea Kelvedon Wonder A prolific cropping dwarf variety of pea producing huge crops of pods containing approximately seven extremely tasty peas that grows to just 45cm or 18 inches in height. Give some support with twiggy pea sticks. Resistant to pea wilt and tolerant to downy mildew. Awarded the RHS Award Of Garden Merit (AGM).
  • Pea Half Pint Half Pint is a wonderful dwarf variety which will grow to only 30cm or 12 inches in height and requires no support. Continous picking of the pea pods will prolong the harvest. A great variety for children to grow.

Vegetable Varieties For Container Gardening – Aubergines to Courgettes

Posted By On September 2, 2010

Make the most of your patio or backyard by growing delicious vegetables in pots or containers. There are a number of vegetable varieties specifically bred or suitable for growing in containers and here are some of our recommended varieties.

Aubergines / Eggplants

  • Baby Rosanna F1 Produces a prolific harvest of golf ball size aubergines which are bitter free. Growing to 60cms or 24 inches the plants need a sunny, sheltered position on a patio or in a conservatory.
  • Baby Belle F1 A dwarf, compact, spine free plant growing to just 30cm or 12 inches in height producing a great harvest of small jet black aubergines. A sunny, sheltered spot is best.


  • Dwarf (Bush) Borlotto Bean Firetongue Dwarf borlotto beans are a colourful addition to the vegetable garden with stricking bright red speckled pods up to 16cm or 6 inches in length containing red speckled beans that can be eaten fresh, dried or frozen.
  • Dwarf (Bush) French Bean Kenyan Safari An excellent french bean that is very heavy cropping producing large clusters of beans which are held high making harvesting easier. The beans are the ‘filet’ type, very slender and stringless with a fabulous flavour. Awarded the RHS Award Of Garden Merit (AGM).
  • Dwarf (Bush) French Bean Sprite An outstanding variety producing 15cm or 6 inches long dark green, fleshy pods which are completely stringless and taste great. Awarded the RHS Award Of Garden Merit (AGM).
  • Dwarf Runner Bean Hestia A beautiful red and white flowering plant growing to just 45cm or 18 inches in height producing a bumper crop of delicious slim and totally stringless runner beans.


  • Beetroot Pronto A baby globe beetroot variety, making it perfect for container growing, with a superb flavour and wonderful coloured foliage.
  • Beetroot Pablo F1 This variety produces dark red round beetroots with only a small tap root making it ideal for tasty baby beets. Use the leaves as you would spinach.


  • Carrot Little Fingers This variety is as the name suggests, delightful little roots that are so sweet and full of flavour that can be harvested at only 9 weeks.
  • Carrot Parmex A quick growing variety that produces golf ball sized carrots with an excellent flavour as good as any of the traditional carrot varieties. Awarded the RHS Award Of Garden Merit (AGM).
  • Carrot Paris Market A really tasty bit sized carrot with smooth round roots that are fast to mature. Wonderful cooked whole in stews and casseroles.

Chili Peppers

  • Chili Pepper Cheyenne F1 Hot! An early ripening compact variety that grows to 45cm or 18 inches in height. Cheyenne produces a large harvest of hot orange coloured fruits.
  • Chili Pepper Demon Red Very hot! A very prolific dwarf variety producing masses of green chili peppers that turn bright red when mature.

Courgettes / Zucchinis

  • Courgette Defender F1 Defender is an excellent British bred variety resistant to Cucumber Mosaic Virus that never fails to produce a huge crop of dark green superbly flavoured courgettes. Awarded the RHS Award Of Garden Merit (AGM).
  • Courgette Black Forest F1 This is a climbing variety of courgette so it is perfect for patio’s and backyards producing tasty dark skinned courgettes.
  • Courgette Midnight F1 Another British bred courgette which produces compact plants that are spine free so making it easier to harvest the delicious dark green glossy fruits.

Growing Potatoes In Containers

Posted By On September 2, 2010

Growing potatoes in containers is a perfect solution for those of us not fortunate enough to have an allotment and where growing space for a kitchen vegetable plot is limited. The added bonus is that potatoes grown in containers produce a beautiful clean crop that is not affected by soil borne pests and diseases such as keeled slugs, potato eelworms and scab.

Which Container To Use

There is no need to buy special potato growing bags or a potato barrel because virtually any container can be used to grow potatoes in as long as it is at least 30cm or 12 inches in diameter and depth. Buckets can be used, large flower pots, flower buckets from the local supermarket, dustbins and even empty compost bags turned inside out. But, you must ensure to make drainage holes in the bottom.

Planting The Potatoes

First put some broken pots in the bottom of the container to aide drainage then using a good multi compost place 10cm or 4 inches of compost in the bottom of your containers. If using a bucket or large flower pot simply place one seed potato with the sprouts facing upward on the compost and cover with a further 10cm or 4 inches of compost. Be sure to water well. When using a dustbin to grow your potatoes place large pieces of broken polystyrene, that is used for packaging, in the base to aide drainage. A dustbin should take four or five seed potatoes.

It is important to either wait until after the last spring frost before planting or protect your containers with fleece if a frost is forecast.

Growing On

When the potato shoots are 15cm or 6 inches tall you need to start earthing up. Add another 10cm or 4 inch layer of multi compost and continue earthing up this way until the potato plant is above the top of the container leaving a 4cm or 2 inch gap at the top of the container for watering. Potatoes need watering well especially when the tubers are growing as under watering can result in a poor crop but don’t drown the plants!


Harvesting is easy when growing one seed potato per bucket or pot, just tip out the entire contents of the bucket for fabulous, fresh and extremely tasty home grown potatoes. First early and second early varieties of potatoes should be ready to harvest after approximately 13 weeks when the foliage starts to turn yellow and die. If you harvest too early you might be disappointed by a small crop of tiny potatoes. Have a careful root through the compost to feel the size of the tubers if you are unsure whether or not the potatoes are ready to harvest.

Christmas Potatoes

Yes, it is possible to serve freshly harvested home grown potatoes with your Christmas Day meal. You will need to order second early seed potatoes from an online supplier which will be ready to plant out as soon as they arrive in July / early August. Be sure to water the plants well especially during a hot summer. The potatoes will be ready to harvest in October but leave them undisturbed in the containers they are growing in and you should enjoy the treat of a Christmas harvest.

Top 10 Broad Bean Varieties

Posted By On May 14, 2009

Broad beans (fava beans) are a joy to grow. Opening the shiny pods for the very first time and seeing the beans nestled in their furry beds is just fabulous! These are some of our favourite varieties.

  • Masterpiece Green Longpod An excellent longpod variety producing long pods that contain up to 8 green beans. A very high yielding heritage variety dating from the late 1800’s with a superb flavour. Awarded the RHS Award Of Garden Merit (AGM).
  • Aquadulce Claudia Probably the best broad bean variety for sowing in the autumn. It is hardy enough to withstand winter frosts and gives an early harvest of tasty, white seeded long pods. Another heritage variety from the 1850’s which has received the RHS Award Of Garden Merit (AGM).
  • Bunyard’s Exhibition This variety was introduced pre 1835. A longpod variety producing a large harvest of delicious flavoured white seeded beans with up to 9 beans per pod.
  • The Sutton A great dwarf variety growing to just 12 inches which makes it ideal for small gardens and exposed sites. First intrduced in 1923 The Sutton can be sown in late autumn, under cloches, and gives a good yield of 6 inch pods containing 5 tasty beans. Awarded the RHS Award Of Garden Merit (AGM).
  • Red Epicure If you want to grow a broad bean that is a bit different then try this variety. The pods contain up to 5 crimson red beans which aswell as tasting lovely add a vibrant splash of colour to the dinner plate (when steamed). Dates from 1894.
  • Imperial Green Longpod An excellent variety that ticks all the boxes. The plants produce a very heavy harvest with pods growing up to 15 inches in length containing 9 green beans. The taste is superb and the beans freeze well. Awarded the RHS Award Of Garden Merit (AGM). What more could you ask for?
  • Witkiem Manita A good variety for early spring sowings with tolerance to the cold weather. It is very high yielding and fast maturing so gives an early harvest of short pods containg top quality white beans. Awarded the RHS Award Of Garden Merit (AGM)
  • Medes A medium height, compact plant which produces an excellent, heavy crop of medium length pods containing up to 6 white tender, juicy beans. Suitable for a spring sowing and awarded the RHS Award Of Garden Merit (AGM).
  • Optica Being a lower growing plant it is ideal for small kitchen gardens and has been awarded the RHS Award Of Garden Merit (AGM). It is a very heavy cropper with short pods containing 5 white beans which have a wonderful flavour. If the pods are picked young they can be eaten whole.
  • Stero An extremely popular slender podded variety which sets mange-tout style pods that are so tender and sweet that they can be eaten raw or just lightly steamed. Regular picking will ensure a heavy yield and later in the season you can allow the beans to form inside the pods for harvesting in the normal way.

Courgette Frittata Recipe

Posted By On May 14, 2009

Courgette Frittata is really tasty and this recipe is a great way to help use a glut of courgettes. Use as many courgettes as you like!


  • Courgettes
  • 2 x Onions
  • 6 x Eggs
  • Garlic
  • Seasoning

These quantities are for a 10 inch frying pan, I use 2 eggs in a 7 inch pan. It is an easy recipe to scale down for smaller frying pans.


  • Slice the onions and lightly saute in olive oil with a little chopped garlic, black pepper and sea salt.
  • Add plenty of sliced courgettes to the onions and continue cooking until the courgettes soften but don’t let the courgettes go too soft.
  • Whisk the eggs then add to the courgette and onion mixture. Cook over a low light taking care not to burn the base of the frittata.
  • When the base of the frittata is set place the frying pan under the grill to set the top of the eggs.
  • For a change you can sprinkle grated cheese or sliced tomatoes on the top before placing under the grill.
  • It is great served with sausages. Enjoy!!

Braised Red Cabbage Recipe

Posted By On May 14, 2009

This is a lovely warming recipe with a fabulous aroma and the reason why I grow red cabbages!


  • 1 Red Cabbage
  • 2 Medium Onions
  • 2 Cooking Apples
  • 3 tablespoons Red Wine Vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons Brown Sugar
  • Freshly Grated Nutmeg
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Garlic – 1 clove chopped


  • Shred the red cabbage, dice and core the apples and slice the onions.
  • In a casserole dish add a layer of red cabbage, seasoning with salt and pepper, then half the onions, half of the apples, half the garlic, half of the sugar and a grating of fresh nutmeg.
  • Repeat the layers and finish with a layer of red cabbage on the top. Add the red wine vinegar.
  • Put a lid on the casserole dish and cook in the oven for about 2 hours. 150C / 300F / Gas Mark 2.
  • It can be cooked for a shorter time in a large, lidded saute pan on top of the cooker, stirring from time to time and adding a touch of water every now and then especially if the apples start to stick.

Top 10 French Bean Varieties

Posted By On May 14, 2009

French beans are self pollinating, very prolific and an incredibly easy vegetable to grow. Available as either a climbing bean (pole bean) or dwarf bean (bush bean). Here are some of our favourite varieties.

  • Blue Lake A climbing french bean which is an heirloom variety dating from 1885 producing very high yields of straight, stringless pods that have an excellent flavour. Towards the end of the season the pods can be left to mature to produce a crop of haricot beans.
  • Cobra This variety is a vigorous growing climbing french bean which will provide you with a huge harvest of long, straight and totally stringless pods. The beans are very tender and extremely tasty. Awarded the RHS Award Of Garden Merit (AGM).
  • Kenyan Safari A dwarf french bean that is very heavy cropping producing large clusters of beans which are held well clear of the soil. The beans are the ‘filet’ type, very slender and stringless with a fabulous flavour. Awarded the RHS Award Of Garden Merit (AGM) it is an excellent variety to grow in containers.
  • Cherokee Trail Of Tears These black beans were carried by the Cherokee Indians when they were displaced from their lands in 1838. Thousands died on the march hence the name Trail Of Tears. It is a very prolific climbing french bean with purple pods containing black beans. The pods can be eaten fresh and the beans can be dried.
  • Purple Teepee Another excellent dwarf french bean variety that is suitable for growing in containers. The quick maturing pods are purple, pencil thin and stringless. They are carried above the foliage of the bean plant making harvesting easy. Unfortunately the wonderful purple pods turn green when cooked but still have a superb taste.
  • Kingstone Gold A beautiful yellow podded climbing french bean. The plants grow to 6 foot tall and easly set beans which are tender and full of flavour. Awarded the RHS Award Of Garden Merit (AGM) the golden yellow pods make a striking addition to any vegetable garden.
  • Cosse Violette (Purple Podded) An heirloom climbing french bean variety which dates from 1868. It is a very early maturing variety with beautiful deep purple flowers. A very vigorous variety and high yielding with purple beans being produced in large clusters with slightly twisted, slender pods until late in the season.
  • Tendergreen This is a dwarf french bean which has been grown since the early 1900’s producing meaty, fleshy, stringless beans which are tender with a delicious flavour. The pods mature early and a high yield is maintained throughout a long season. Another excellent variety for container growing.
  • Blauhilde A colourful purple podded climbing french bean which produces extremely long, fleshy, stringless pods up to 11 inches in length over a long season with an excellent flavour. Resistant to Common Bean Mosaic Virus.
  • Borlotto Lingua di Fuoco An Italian variety of climbing bean originally grown in the early 1800’s producing large fabulously coloured pods and beans which are heavily streaked with red. A vigorous climber the stringless pods can be harvested young and eaten whole or allowed to mature to shell for borlotti beans.