KISS- Keep it Simple Sally! Many have tried before us and many will try after us, some have succeeded where others have failed. Growing a vegetable patch! To be honest its not rocket science, but I do believe there are a few tricks to making a success of it. Our Grandparents grew the best vegetable patches organically and without online youtube tutorials. Perhaps it was in their DNA and if so why isn't it in ours? (maybe we just have to go with a bit more instinct and a lot less stress about the right and wrong way) I think over time we have turned gardening into a science, perfecting every little step with the latest synthetic product on the market, that has been scientifically proven to make our vegetables grow faster and bigger. 1940s Dad farmed post WW 2 and he delighted in telling the story of when farmers discovered "super phosphate." It changed their lives and income for the better. Oh the joy, once he discovered that he could grow amazing vegetables ahead of the neighbours! mean while my grandfather used to make the long trip up from wellington to our place in the Wairarapa to collect cow manure to take home and turn into beautiful compost. It was my job to hold the old 'Super phosphate bag' open for him as he only had one arm. Of course, the irony of it all was lost on them! Thankfully we have come full circle, we don't need to have a science degree to grow our own food, we just need patience, a great attitude and a few key tips for getting started.

Rule Number

Do NOT dig up half of the back lawn and expect to feed the family in your first season. Start by picking a few key vegetables that your family likes. Consider your space, are you digging up a patch (small) or are you going to use containers? Whichever option, you will still need to water and feed your plants well.

Rule Number 2:

If you are buying plants be very sure that they grow well at this time of the year and in your area. Many vegetable plants are mass grown and big commercial garden centres and supermarkets don't always give good advice. you are new to the whole Gardening thing, start with a few lettuce, spring onions and a pack of radish seed, one tomato plant and a zucchini plant. This will be more then enough to get started, then you can look at other vegetables that grow well at this time of the year. Just remember that the digging and planting is the easy part. Check out our "Metre square gardens" that come with, either a "Cloche cover" for cooler areas or a "Net cover" to keep out pests, hens and rugby balls. No matter what... 'KISS'...keep it simple Sally Next week we can talk about the importance of getting and keeping your soil healthy, and starting your compost pile.