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The Kitchen Garden – Sowing in July

If you are waving “goodbye” to the first half of the year and realising that you still haven’t managed to get started in the garden, don’t panic! There are a few vegetables that can be sown and grown quite happily from July onwards. Here are some of our favourites, as recommended by local gardeners.

Salad leaves

Salad is incredibly satisfying to grow; it grows quickly and you can pick it as you need it. Sow it now and enjoy freshly picked lettuce, spinach and other salad leaves until autumn. The leaves can grow in even the smallest space and in poor quality soil, but the better the soil, the better the end product.

Before you sow the seeds, remove weeds and stones and give the soil a rake through. Make shallow troughs in the soil - about 1cm deep, and water the soil. Sprinkle a layer of seeds along each trough, cover with a thin layer of soil or compost, water again and wait! It is that simple! Keep the plants watered, mulching when the leaves reach over 5cm. As the leaves reach maturity, you can harvest and resow new seeds to keep a plentiful supply of delicious, fresh greens.

Carrots

If you are a carrot lover, this is your last chance to sow them this year! Growing carrots is a little bit more challenging than salad leaves, but if you put in the time, they are very much worth it! For best results, sow the carrots direct – ideal for a late sow as you don’t need to worry about frost. Prepare the soil in the same way as you do for leaves, make a shallow trench then drop the seeds in. As the carrots take vertical space, not horizontal, you can make the trenches about 1cm apart. Cover the trench, gently pack the soil down and gently water the newly sown ground. It can take up to 3 weeks to see the carrots start to sprout, but they will need careful watering throughout. About 2-3 months after you plant, you should have a lovely crop of carrots – perfect for an autumnal carrot soup!

Radishes

The radish is another quick win, offering you delicious, home grown produce in a relatively short time. The preparation and sowing processes are much the same as that for sowing lettuces and carrots, but unlike carrots, radishes tend to deliver speedy results. You should have delicious radishes to accompany your fresh salad leaves in 3-6 weeks.

Keeping on top of home and garden maintenance can be a challenge. If you need some inspiration or would like help getting started, why not get a professional in? A gardener will have the skills and experience to make your garden flourish at any time of the year and will be able to offer you advice on the best plants and processes to meet your needs.

Take a look at our directory of rated, reviewed local gardeners to find one near you.

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