Kitchen Garden|June 2020
How long have you been interested in growing your own veg and when did you start your first veg patch?
Our first vegetable patch began when we moved to our cottage almost four years ago. I saw some vegetable plugs in the garden center and on a whim popped them in my basket. I got home and plonked them in a desolate patch of soil and hoped for the best. Most were planted at the wrong time of the year, our beetroot and cauliflower bolted, and our carrots had holes all over them. I was left feeling rather befuddled. The few edible crops that did make it to the kitchen made me so happy. I was absolutely determined to do better next year. If farmers can produce great big fields of vegetables, then why couldn’t I grow enough for my family? My husband saw my frustration and thoughtfully bought me a guide to growing vegetables. Little did he know that gift would spark a passion in me that would totally change my life path.
The next season the girls and I began digging up the grass in our garden and transformed it into vegetable patches. The inspiration came from watching the Peter Rabbit movie with the kids – Mr. McGregor’s garden was dancing in front of our eyes! The beautiful vegetables were bursting on to the screen and from t on I knew I wanted to create our ow wonderland, not just for me but also children to explore and learn.
Until recently you were flying the world as cabin crew and also have a lovely family. How did you find the time to tend to your vegetable patch?
With a whopping great big passion and lots of love! It did become difficult; until a few months ago I was flying part-time, working at Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat’ Saisons and maintaining our own vegetable garden, which in the height of summer becomes a full-time job in itself. I am also currently taking a course with the RHS in horticulture. My top priority though is keeping a happy home for the family. Unfortunately, the cracks started to appear, the housework went by the wayside and if it wasn’t for Eliot, my husband, I don’t think we would have been able to fit through the front door for the mess. I had to make the difficult decision of leaving flying, which I loved for 19 years, to follow my passion of growing vegetables. Taking the plunge into the eye-opening world of gardening was the best decision for the whole family and I have never looked back.
Your two young daughters help you on your plot and often feature in your videos. Any tips for gardening with young children?
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