We love our HOME GROWN!

WOMAN'S WEEKLY|June 02, 2020

We love our HOME GROWN!
Three women reveal how they make the best use of their outdoor space
GILLIAN HARVEY

‘My children are now obsessed with watching wildlife’

Hannah Garcia, 35, lives in Cardiff.

I’ve always been a big fan of nature, and my first job – on an urban farm in London in my 20s – made it an obsession. I’d invite local children to the farm to learn about animals and growing – for some, it was their first-ever contact with livestock.

In 2012, I moved to Cardiff and started a business hatching chicks in schools to teach children about farming and life cycles. Like many people, I dreamed that, one day, I’d have my own smallholding and grow vegetables, keep chickens and live the good life.

Sadly, when I bought my first house with my partner Leo, 34, in 2014, the garden was only 30 square feet and completely paved. But I didn’t let it stop me! It’s taken three years, but the courtyard is now a thriving garden.

I’ve cultivated a raised bed where I grow veg, created a wildlife border, and even have a little pond where my kids can watch tadpoles develop. I grow herbs in hanging baskets and have bought four small bantam hens.

There’s no better feeling than bringing in a freshly laid egg – the bantams lay tiny ones with bright orange yolks. My daughter, Aderyn, four, and son, Bryn, two, have learned to listen out for the call the hens make when laying, and rush into the garden.

My children are now obsessed with watching wildlife – and my garden is full of birds and insects. When we go outside, there’s an amazing sound as 25 sparrows take off at once.

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June 02, 2020