Tuesday, 14 July 2009


We’d love to be self-sufficient at our house, but we don’t have enough space in our own garden, in fact, I’m sure I read somewhere you need an acre of land per person to be truly self-sufficient and our garden doesn’t even barely come close.


To give us a bit more space we are doing an unofficial land-share. My neighbour is elderly and couldn’t manage her garden so, in exchange for vegetables, ourselves and another neighbour are making use of the land and keeping it tidy. If you need more space to grow veggies, but you don’t have any land available nearby (to beg, borrow or share) you can contact Landshare, a UK initiative that puts together people who have spare land with people who need it.

For months the ground has been pretty bare save for a few seedlings and small plants but with the recent weather here in the UK, blazing sun and plenty of rain, those tiny seedlings have become triffids – it’s all so exciting!



Sprouts – we have 9 plants in this garden and another 6 in ours… I want my Christmas dinner now!


Courgettes – we’ve grown two different types this year and yesterday we picked our first fruit. They made a lovely pasta sauce :) We’re also growing pumpkins, but they’re not doing much yet.

5Cabbages – we have a million of these, I sowed them as seed, and when they needed thinning out I transplanted the strongest plants to gaps around the garden.


Corn (or maize) on the left, cabbages, tomatoes, more cabbages and rhubarb.

 7 corn

Our maize in action – we’ve never grown this before and it is so unbelievably easy to look after I think we’ll grow it again.


Tomatoes – I’m a bit of a tomato nut. I always grow the fancy varieties like the black and stripy ones, but as usual the regular, plain old Shirleys and Alicantes do the best.

In the greenhouse we have more tomatoes, bell peppers and aubergines – we love our Med veg.


And finally, the real reason we have to land-share. Meet Dave and Vera (we had a Chuck too, but sadly she died) They take up half of our garden but we like it that way. They are ex-battery hens we rescued through Hen Rehomers UK, a charity run entirely by volunteers dedicated to saving ‘spent’ battery hens from slaughter and rehoming them as pets. We’re getting a few more in September.

And they do make great pets, with the added bonus of free eggs. Now, if I could just teach the cats to make chutney….



  1. I love your rescued hens! What a brilliant idea!

  2. that is such a cool idea of land sharing,

    sad that your chook died but it is nice that they were rescued we only buy eggs that are hen friendly.

    would so love to get chooks one day, I use to have silky bantams when I was younger they made the best pets.