Spotlight on Parsnips

Parsnips have been grown in Britain since Roman times, so were a staple of the British diet long before the potato became widely eaten. They were mainly used to add a bit of sweetness to recipes and remained a favourite side dish the traditional roast. Sow fresh parsnip seeds – they become less effective or Read More

Try this toilet paper substitute

Want to grow something unusual? Then try Yacon or Smallanthus sonchifolius, which has leaves that are so soft they have even been used as toilet paper! It is a distant relative of sunflowers with a sweet-tasting tuber that can be made into a ‘no-sugar’ syrup for diabetics and for those on a diet as it is Read More

Thunder pants!

It’s well known that after eating sprouts you’ll more than likely be producing some pretty disgusting stenches, which can clear a room in seconds… This is because they contain high amounts of cellulose and complex sugars, which are difficult for the human body to digest so bits of sprout end up in the colon where gut Read More

Grow James Wong’s ‘Incredible edibles’

TV’s ethno botanist James Wong has inspired many of us through his BBC programs and books. He sees himself as being as experimental in the garden as Heston Blumenthal is in the kitchen! He is the author of  ‘Grow Your Own Drugs, and inspired the GYO brigade with his book Homegrown Revolution and in recent Read More

Fill your larders with these unusual winter veg

Before we were taught that eating 5-a-day was the way forward for better health, my sister Karen and I were quite used to eating fresh veggies from dad’s allotment until that is, the 70s kicked in and like more or less everyone else in Britain, our eating habits changed. We were suddenly eating more ‘exotic’ Read More

GYO Chinese take away

Fast food and good health are rarely put in the same sentence but if you grow some Asian veggies, you can simply chuck them in a wok with a dash of soy sauce, ginger and herbs and within minutes you’ll have an authentic, tasty, nutritious meal that can cost just pennies to produce. Growing your Read More

Brussels sprouts are great for dieters

Brussels sprouts are now in vogue with health-conscious foodies. You’ll even find them turning up as a deep- fried delicacy and pizza topping on fine dining menus around the world and maybe on the chill counter at your local supermarket in everything from sausages to a delicious dip, called Brusslemole, which is a blend of Read More

Glen’s soup will mend a broken heart!

Glen Headland is a freelance journalist and award-winning photographer based in Devon, specialising in gardening, social history and celebrity interviews. She is also a wife and mother and describes herself as having grey hair, goggles and someone else’s teeth! You can get to know more about Glen from her blog: ishallwearpurple.me Glen has chosen to Read More

What to do with a courgette glut

Keen gardener, and ceramicist Kate McBride lives in Sleaford and also part-time in Limoges, France with her husband Nick. Some of her other passions are her two cocker spaniels, Lilly and Totty and house rabbit Dolly plus all the issues surrounding global warming, hunting and waste – she abhors today’s throwaway attitude. She also enjoys tealeaf Read More

Leeks make a hearty winter broth

When I was a kid, we ate fresh veg straight from the allotment. At this time of year, dad was harvesting plenty of leeks and whilst ‘the best’ went to the Show bench at his local allotment society’s event, which was held in late August, the rest of the leeks were turned into my dad’s Read More