Have you got your portable holiday garden ready yet? It’s not too late to put a few seedlings in a tub so you’ll have fresh salad greens and herbs to snip while you’re at the bach or campsite.
A few trays or tubs of baby salad vegetables, herbs and microgreens are up there on my summer holiday packing list alongside the sunscreen, books and essential cooking gear. They make such a difference to the way we eat on holiday.
If you have time, plant seeds four to five weeks before you head away. After two weeks you’ll have microgreens ready to snip and in another two weeks the plants will have put on another 2-3cm in growth and will be starting to form a thick swathe in the pot, ready to cut and come again.
If you’ve run out of time to grow a takeaway garden from seed, your best bet is to buy punnets of small seedlings and re-pot them into your portable garden containers. You can just arrange them in a banana box in their punnets, but they’ll grow better and last longer if you transplant them into a cheap plastic tub or polystyrene chilly bin.
Just poke some holes in the bottom, line the base with about 4cm of potting mix, then gently lift the plants out of their punnets in one unit and pack them tightly into your containers. Squeeze in as many as you can, ensuring the roots are fully covered in soil. Pick little sprigs as you need them and the plants will continue to flourish.
I like to grow all kinds of soft salad greens and herbs like this – bull’s blood beetroot, broccoli, radishes, spinach, rocket, peas, mustard, kale, red cabbage, spring onions, basil, parsley, chives, mesclun and coriander all work well. (Woody, dense herbs such as rosemary, thyme and oregano keep well in the fridge or can be dried, so I tend to grow them in my garden at home and just take sprigs with me when I go on holiday.)
Find out more...
- See my online Growing Guide for more tips for growing and using herbs and salad greens.
- See my website for lots of free summer salad recipes.
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