One thing this pandemic has taught us is the need to go back to basics in a time of crisis. Over the past couple of years during lockdown, home gardens were the prime location for daily exercise and planting a vegetable patch. But what about the people who live in flats or accommodation without any outside space?
In support of the United Nations – International Youth Day on the 12th August 2021, we showing you a way youcan support their focus this year which is, Transforming Food Systems: Youth Innovation for Human and Planetary Health.
With window sill planters, you can still take part in growing some of your own vegetables and herbs. Yes you may have a busy window sill for a while but, you’ll also be helping towards a sustainable future by reducing waste packaging and helping yourself health wise with fresh organic home grown food.
Here are a few things you can grow from a planter.
Pea shoots have been a favourite of mine this year, they have a lovely fresh, earthy green taste and are great in salads or dotted fresh over a stir-fry. Once you cut your shoots they will grow back again, being the gift that keeps on giving.
- Grab some whole dried peas from the supermarket.
- Place them in a small container with a few tablespoons of water overnight.
- The next day, line a small plant tray with compost about 2cms.
- Drain any excess water from the peas and place them on top of the compost
- Add another layer of composts and firm down.
- Place your plant on a sunny seal and add a little water.
In a few days you will start to see sprouts appearing and in 6 days you can reap the benefits.
This one might take you back to your childhood, well it certainly does for me. I learned how to grow these and beans at primary school. I remember I just couldn’t wait for my egg shell man to have some hair.
This just proves how simple it is to grow but have you ever had a cress and egg mayo sandwich, sprinkle with a little salt, mustard powder and white pepper? It’s delish; in fact, cress compliments a lot of salads or sandwiches going.
This is one to get your children involved in, have softies (soft boiled eggs) one morning and save the shells; wash and leave them to dry.
- First things first, grab a sharpie and draw a funny face on the shell.
- Fill the egg shell 3 quarters of the way with compost and then cotton wool
- Sprinkle the Cress seed covering the top of the cottonwool thickly and give it a little drink of water.
- Wait for a few days and your character will slowly get some hair.
- When it reaches the seedling stage it’s time to harvest and give them a haircut.
Herbs – Coriander
You may have seen the herb plants in the supermarket and they can be great however sometimes you find as soon as you get them home they can die due to the change of environment.
They are super easy to grow yourself, and it’s great to have them to hand when you need them.
Fresh Coriander is one I use often but I recommend you get some support sticks and wire string to hold things in place, because they grow and have a mind of their own.
- Purchase some coriander seeds online
- Take a good amount of the seeds, place them between two pieces of paper then place a book on top and lean in to crack the shells, once or twice should be enough.
- Place crushed seeds in water overnight
- Fill a small planter with compost 3 quarters of the way
- Dain seeds and spread over the top
- Cover with another layer of compost, add a sprinkle of water and move to a window seal
- Sprouts should start to appear in a few days but try not on over water or they’ll go the other way
Lemon Verbena has three very useful uses, they smell wonderful and give off a beautiful fragrance. Dried they make a very tasty herbal tea which when cooled can switch to refreshing aromatic water. Fresh, they are a great topping for a hint of lemon to noodle dishes.
- Purchase seeds online or in a garden centre.
- Line your planter with pebbles and make sure it has a draining hole and saucer; a 30 dia planter should do the trick.
- Fill with compost 3 quarters of the way
- Sprinkle Lemon Verbena seeds on top and cover will another layer of compost.
Giving your plant a regular trim is required to keep it at a manageable size, but if you drink tea regularly, that will be no prob at all. Monitor the water intake by starting with once a week; if you find the saucer is empty by the end of the week a weekly water is recommend.
Don’t be alarmed if by the winter you start to see leaves dropping off, they will start to grow again in the spring.