The trend for growing your own has always been an important addition to many of our gardens, but during the months of lockdown it has taken a definite upsurge. More time spent at home and in our gardens means more time to tend to our crops. 


Studies have shown that the longer that veg is left once it’s been picked, the more nutritional value is lost. With a range of greenhouse ideas, growing your own has never been simpler and it means that you can eat veg the very same day it’s picked, guaranteeing the maximum possible nutrients and taste.


Growing your own is a good choice for our planet. An advantage being that you know exactly how far your vegetables have travelled, therefore you’re not contributing to any air pollution. There’s no need for packaging with home grown veg, which keeps unnecessary waste down. You can also have control over what pesticides (or lack thereof) are used.


It’s hard to believe this salad staple was once considered a weed. It’s packed with vitamin K, which is necessary for blood clotting and aids healthy bones. It is also a great source of vitamin C and contains antioxidants, which is thought to lower the risk of chronic diseases and cancer. It’s one of the best foods to grow in a greenhouse because it can be grown all year round, though it experiences a slow growth period during deep midwinter. It’s an excellent choice for pots, and Hartley Botanic experts recommend standing them in shallow saucers of water, which you top up regularly to help keep them continually moist. You can grow them well from seed, or alternatively you can take cuttings from shop-bough varieties by inserting into wet compost or water and then planting in place when roots start to form.


There is no surprise that Swiss chard is one of the best vegetables to grow in a greenhouse. As well as vitamin K, chard is high in antioxidants, including beta-carotene and flavonoids. It also contains plenty of fibre. When planning a greenhouse, find a sunny spot for Swiss chard and sow your seeds in moisture retentive, free draining soil in trays around 2.5cm deep. Keep the soil moist but not waterlogged and at a minimum temperature of 10C. Young leaves are less tough, so don’t wait too long to harvest.


The sometimes-forgotten leaves of beetroot plants are in fact incredibly good for you. They are bursting with vitamins and minerals including vitamin C, which is a natural immunity booster, vitamin A for healthy skin and eyes and vitamin K. They are also rich in copper, manganese, iron, calcium and they are a good source of fibre.


Spinach is well known for its nutritional qualities and has always been regarded as a plant with remarkable abilities to restore energy, increase vitality and improve the quality of the blood. There are sound reasons why spinach would produce such results, primarily the fact that it is rich in iron. Spinach is also an excellent source of vitamin K, vitamin A, vitamin C and folate as well as being a good source of manganese, magnesium, iron and vitamin B2.