Week 5 is here, and the longer days and sunny moments have cheered the windowsill up no end. I thought I’d ring the changes with some of the things I’ve been growing, so off I went back to Poundland for another of their bargain £1 mixed packets of seed.
I bought their ‘fresh salad’ multipack, which contains radish, cress, spring onion, tomato, iceberg lettuce and cucumber, all of which I hear can be grown indoors. The tomato variety is Moneymaker, which I won’t be growing this year as I’ve set my heart on growing other varieties (more about that later). The lettuce will probably be eaten at the baby leaf stage, or there won’t be enough room for it. Iceberg isn’t exactly gourmet, but it does have a mild flavour and a good crunch, and it mixes well with pea shoots.
Speaking of which, I cut the last lot of shoots for a garnish. They tasted as good as the first crop, but there were fewer of them and they grew smaller leaves. To complete the experiment I’ll try to grow a third set of shoots from the same pot, although I’m not too hopeful they’ll be as good. Here’s what they look like now, rather depleted.
Here are some of the herbs: dill (new), mint and parsley. The basil is still being finnicky and I’m probably going to end up re-seeding the pots at this rate. I have loads of different seeds left over from my outdoor herb garden so will probably try a few different varieties on the windowsill too to see how they turn out.
Next up, the radishes and cucumber were planted 6 days ago and are already going strong. They’re the pots on the left. Will be pulling up radish thinnings soon and adding them to salads – sowed 8 seeds as an experiment and wasn’t expecting them to have quite so much oomph. Haven’t started the spring onions off yet, but maybe at the weekend…
Mini-lettuces just sprouted, and all I can say is that I hope the other salad leaves start to take note of their work ethic:
The spicy salad leaves are still looking like overgrown cress, the slackers. Might decide to grow a second batch soon, but start them off in a mini-propagator instead and hot-house the little gits.
Speaking of mini propagators, the tomato seeds I planted (cherry and plum) last week are doing really well.
I’ve been bartering on GardenSwapShop and bidding on eBay to get some more interesting salad seeds too, as cheaply as possible. I now have red and green salad bowl, Lazio spinach, red mustard, lollo rossa and rocket to sow, all of which are cut-and-come again varieties so hopefully we’ll get several crops out of each plant. There’s also some land cress, which is supposed to be easier to grow than watercress, but let’s wait and see.
The total spend so far is £3.99, which I’m hoping will keep me in salad ingredients for several months. About the same price as a couple of bags of supermarket baby leaf salad, and with lots of variety so we don’t get bored.
Are you growing food in your kitchen too? How’s it coming along?