Tag: growing vegetables


This week I planted out 40 Kale plants in the Batty Langley vegetable garden that have been quietly growing along in the greenhouse since September. We are trying three varieties, ‘Red Russian’, ‘Cavolo Nero’ and ‘Borecole – Green Curled Dwarf’.

Kale does well over the colder months, so will hopefully add some interest in the garden over the following darker months. As pigeons take a fancy to stripping the foliage off plants in the Brassica family, the precaution of placing net over the kale plants has been necessary to stop them becoming just tattered stems!

I have used two beds to grow the kale in, with 20 plants in each one, and to create a neat formal look the use of a tape measure was implemented to ensure even spacing.

The botanical name for kale is Brassica oleracea var. acephala, ‘Brassica’ being the genus consisting of cabbages, ‘oleracea’ meaning that the plant can be used as a vegetable and ‘acephala’ meaning ‘without a head’, i.e that the plant is loose leafed rather than with a head as many cultivated cabbages have. Kale has a long history as a food crop, being one of the most important green vegetables in Europe up until the end of the Middle Ages.


Building Cob Ovens – Pizza and Potatoes

Get your feet stuck in and your hands mucky creating our community Cob Oven. Just watch or join in. Those who get ‘stuck in’ will be invited to share the community feast of pizza from the first firing on Wednesday evening. So put your best foot forward and come join in.

The feast may continue past the specified event times.

Normal entry prices
£4.50/£4 adults/concessions
£1 child/ under 5s free
Family Activities Annual Pass holders -free


Potato Day

Plant. Grow. Eat. Paint. Create. Spend the day learning all about spuds!

Our mission is to get people growing – and tasting – their own healthy fresh spuds. Let us show you how and take home your own growing kit. And guess what, you don’t need a garden to grow your own fabulously tasty fresh potatoes.

Come along to the Gardens on Saturday 1st April for a fun and informative potato day.

  • Discover the red, white, and blue potatoes we’re planting
  • Find out how to grow potatoes in a bag on your back porch, take one away to try yourself (one free per family)
  • Grab a spade and join in our veg-patch-plant-up
  • Make a potato man
  • Have fun spud printing
  • Hear from the potato experts and more

Join for this exciting day all about creating with spuds, 12:30 – 4:30pm at the Gardens.

£4.50/£4 for adults, (plus gift aid) £1 for children, Under 5’s free

Garden Member discount available


Pumpkin cook-up

It’s been an exceptionally good year for our pumpkin and squash crop. 

Some went to enliven Halloween, some have been sold to our visitors.

Traditionally – with the help of volunteers – we then turn them into delicious soup to sell to our customers in the colder months.

This year we’re going a little further. Our volunteers have had a group chopping and cooking session. The surplus soup and spare squashes will now be shared with some other charities.

We love growing these triffid-like plants in our South Kitchen Garden and chuffed that all the effort will not go to waste but will go to provide some warmth and sustenance to others who need a little extra.



hallmoor students celebrate the harvest

Harvest for Hallmoor pupils

First visit of term for Hallmoor school pupils

We were pleased to welcome back Hallmoor school pupils today. A class of pupils comes every Friday to learn gardening skills, cultivate their patch of land and grow vegetables.

Before the summer break they had planted, hoe’d and weeded the plot….and today they saw it had all played off. A bumper crop of beans, onions and pumpkins and more to come.

Well done kids…next stop, planting the winter veg