Growing your own

While spring might be the best time to start your veg growing, it’s never too late to get a few seeds in the ground and enjoy the satisfaction and joy of your own homegrown food!

The internet is awash with growing tips, and so we have put together some ideas to get you on your way.

Small spaces Almost everyone can find a sunny window sill for some fresh Italian basil or a hot chilli plant in a container. And if you are lucky enough to have a balcony that receives a reasonable amount of sun and is sheltered from the wind, then fresh cherry tomatoes, baby lettuce and fresh herbs such as rosemary and mint are within your reach. Try growing tomatoes in a container or grow bag.

Medium spaces If you have a little more space then you can try growing veg in grow bags, pots or even stacked car tyres! Beans, tomatoes, strawberries and many greens will all do well, and tyres are perfect for potatoes. See here for plenty of ideas, or try growing a vertical garden!

Larger spaces If you have space for a veg patch either at home or on an allotment site, then the sky is the limit – pending some good weather! The Allotment Society has tips for growing veg on allotments.

If you think working an entire plot alone would be too much, many allotments offer the opportunity to work with others on a community site or can rent you a half plot.

Each Council is in charge of the local allotment sites, and their website will list these and let you know how to request a plot. Lists of allotments in the ten local authorities in Greater Manchester are available here: Bolton, Bury, Manchester, Oldham, Rochdale, Salford (council-run and self-managed), Stockport, Tameside, Trafford and Wigan.

You can buy vegetable seedlings and seeds for planting at several garden centres in Manchester, and here are some of our favourites: