Grow your own to fill your jars
With the current chilly days and long hours of darkness, you could be forgiven for not thinking too much about gardening; however, now is the perfect time to start planning for next year, perusing the seed catalogues at leisure and deciding what you might like to grow next season. In today’s blog post, we take a look at growing your own fruit and vegetables to give you your very own year-round supply of fresh ingredients for your jams, pickles and preserves.
Grow the ingredients to fill your jam jars
Growing your own fresh and tasty fruit and vegetables is the ideal thing for anyone who loves home preserving. From jars of classic strawberry jam to homemade chutney and bottles of rhubarb gin, you will save money and have the satisfaction of knowing that you were responsible for absolutely every stage of the process.
If you only have a small garden, or even no garden at all, don’t be put off having a go at growing your own. There are all sorts of options for gardening in a small space, with plenty of fruit and vegetables suitable for even the tiniest window boxes. There are even varieties of strawberries and cherry tomatoes that grow brilliantly in hanging baskets, so you really only need an outside wall!
Another option for those who do not have any space at home to grow fruit or vegetables is to get an allotment close to your home. As growing your own food is so popular right now, allotments often have long waiting lists; therefore, if this is something that appeals, make it your early New Year’s resolution to get your name down for one as soon as possible. If the thought of a full-sized allotment is a little daunting, why not team up with a friend or neighbour to share the allotment?
Having decided that you want to grow your own, it is time to start thinking about what to grow. The key here is to grow things that you know you will love eating and that will thrive in your local climate. It is no good deciding to grow melons unless you have a greenhouse, for example, and carrots won’t do well if your soil is very stony. Take some time to prepare a plan of what you would like to grow, along with the harvesting dates for each crop.
Jars and bottles to the rescue
Every gardener has a glut at some point, of course, so make sure you have plenty of jars and bottles ready to turn your produce into delicious pickles and preserves.