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Guest Blog from Tim Keates; Sow and Grow

Tim Keates; inspirational food grower[/caption]Welcome to a new column on growing your own fruit and vegetables. November at first glance seems peculiar time to begin a conversation on grow-your-own. But I want to share that in fact that autumn and winter, for me are exciting times. They are laden with the possibility of the year to come. I do my planning of what new things I will try. What worked & what did not from the closing year. And most importantly what did I learn from the passing of time.

In ancient Rome, Janus was the God of beginnings & transition. Often depicted with two faces he saw into the future & into the past. The deity associated with doors, gateways and passages. January is named to honour him.

So as the nights draw in and the golden leaves fall and are swept away by the wind I would like you to consider what spring may have in store for you?
If you already are growing food for yourself, spend a moment to think what went well and what can be improved upon?

If you are new to gardening or growing amazing produce for yourself or your loved ones. I would like to welcome you to a fruit & veg blog with a difference.

There is no shortage of information on the Internet. So what can Sow & Grow offer over-and-above plentiful great advice, tips & tricks. I would like to tender a fresh perspective and approach to providing for yourself, making a difference for those around you and your community.

I argue that growing your own will get you in touch with healthy food choices, fresh, tasty vital foods, nature, the seasons and like Janus as your knowledge grows you will be able to look into the future as well as the past.



Jobs you can do:
Dig out pernicious weeds. Don’t let them grow strong through winter.
If you want autumn planted garlic, onions and shallots. Do it now.
Sow broad beans in lines or blocks.
Sow green manures if you have bare soil (after digging out the weeds).
Grow something useful, don’t let weeds take hold. I have had great success with field beans. It’s not too late and they improve the soil massively.
Begin a compost heap.
Collect autumn leaves into a pile and compost them to create leafmold for next year’s seed potatoes patch.

You will see fruit bushes on sale at nurseries & DIY stores. The bushes loose their leaves, but are healthy. Buy them half price & put then in now, or protect the pot from frost with fleece, & put them in, in the Spring. Cheap and super fresh soft fruit here we come.

Contact seeds companies and get them to send you their new catalogue, either printed or online. Enjoy looking into the future sitting by the fire imagining your bumper crop.Community farm

For future articles I suggest a multilayered approach. Mile markers on what is happening now, what to sow or harvest, what to look out for and what not to do.

Also a breakdown of what’s coming up within the month and what is scheduled in a month or two. This may give you a heads-up to spot a bargain or plan ahead.

May I wish you a vivid imagination towards next year’s harvest.