Welcome

Welcome to Trevor’s Kitchen Garden.

This is where I will post information and ideas on growing your own food, based mostly on my own experience. I’ve been growing my own food for some years now and find it a great source of pleasure, nourishing for body, mind and spirit.

Now that the book ‘Trevor’s Kitchen Garden’ is published, I hope this will add a useful new resource to kitchen gardening with over 60 hand drawn illustrations and colourful photographs.

This website, meanwhile,  is intended for beginners who want to grow their own food. I know that a great many people want to do this but just don’t know how to get started. I’ll keep things simple throughout; after all, growing food is a simple, natural activity. As well as creating a diary of what I’m doing in my own garden each week, I’ll include some video clips to show you just how easy it is.

So, thanks for visting Trevor’s Kitchen Garden. Come back soon so see how my garden grows. Better still, why not copy what I’m doing and we can compare results!

Trevor Sargent

1 February 2009 (updated 24 March 2012)

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33 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Yvonne on July 17, 2009 at 10:03 am

    To Trevor, Lorcan and all, well done great site, thumbs up for design and content! sounded great on the radio! Yvonne

    Reply

  2. Posted by James O'Donnell on July 17, 2009 at 10:10 am

    Hi Trevor

    Im 19 and have finished my leaving certificate,at this stage im bored stiff and would like to start growing my own vegetables.Is this the wrong time of the year?.What could you recommend i do,should i be planting seeds to be ready for some time later in the year.I understand you’re very busy but i would be very gratefull for any tips.

    Reply

    • Hi James. August is a good month to prepare ground for autumn planting. I’d set out 4 plots as the basis for a 4 year rotation. Plot A I’d sow a green manure crop such as phacelia. (Ask about it in a gardening shop.) Plot B I would dig in some compost if you have any and cover with old carpet or cardboard to keep it weed free. Cabbage family will, be sown in plot B. Plot C plant broad beans at the end of October, leave room for runner beans and peas to be sown in Spring. In Plot D, plant Winter onion sets such as Radar in September and leave space in Plot D for garlic cloves which can be planted in November. Next year, the plot D onion family move and Plot A becomes the onion patch, A goes to B and so on. This avoids disease build up and helps maximise yields. Good luck and keep an eye on the kitchen garden site. Regards. Trevor

      Reply

  3. Hi Trevor,
    Had a look at your garlic this morning! Impressive. Just come in from the tunnel. The earthed-up celery is looking good, tied it up with raffia ,then moulded up. Should be good for Christmas dinner!. Just picked some courgettes to make ratatouille and our carrots are doing fine. Won’t be sowing our garlic till March. Leeks re very poor – more like pencils. Very disappointing. I think it’s the wet, dull summer. Never had such a poor crop.
    Mary

    Reply

  4. Posted by John on January 28, 2010 at 5:30 pm

    Hi Trevor,

    I have tried growing various fruits and veg over the past few years and have had good results and bad. This year, I would like to try my hand at carrots and onions. My garden is quite small (Inchicore, Dublin) with variable amounts of light. Would you have any advice regarding suitable varieties which might suit these conditions? I planted tomotoes last year and had a bumper crop which suggests the garden holds the heat quite well.

    Thanks and congrats on the site!!

    John

    Reply

    • John, a Chara.
      Glad you’re planning on onions and carrots. Onions sometimes are affected by damp so a sunny spot is best. Carrots like sun too but the main consideration is to prepare a seed bed with a good tilth. I mix soil with compost and fill large pots. The pots are about 2 feet high and maybe this is the reason I have escaped attacks by the low flying carrot root fly. Not sure it will make much difference which varieties you choose. Just check your onion seeds or sets are for Spring sowing if sowing now.
      Le meas glas,
      Trevor

      Reply

  5. Posted by Bríd O'Sullivan on February 7, 2010 at 2:57 pm

    Hi Trevor,

    Great Site – great work – very encouraging!

    I’ve recently retired and would love to get an allotment in Sandymount, Irishtown or Ringsend but am unaware of any in these areas??

    BrídBrí

    Reply

    • BrídBrí, a Chara,
      Thanks for making contact. Not aware of allotments close to where you live. City Council is the authority responsible for responding to such a request. Maybe a note to the City Manager would be a start. Meanwhile, I’m keen to get as many back and front gardens growing some food. The food picked outside the kitchen door is even fresher that allotment produce, and easier to maintain. Even containers, grow bags and windowboxes are handy and productive. Le meas glas. Trevor

      Reply

  6. Posted by Patrick J. Flannery on February 24, 2010 at 12:12 am

    Trevor, I’m really sorry to see that you had to resign your Dáil seat — Keep up the good work with your green thumbs and this Website…. Hopefully, and in a matter of time, you’ll be back in the Oireachtas.

    Good luck!

    Patrick Flannery in San Francisco

    Reply

  7. Hi Trevor
    My sympathies for what is going on in government for you right now. It’s not ok.
    I interviewed you at An t’Ionad Gals in Drumcollagher a few weeks ago and am just sending you the video link.

    Best of luck with everything
    Valerie

    Reply

    • Hi Valerie,
      Thanks for the video link and the thoughts. I’ll not be distracted from pursuing the interests we discussed in Drumcollogher regardless of Government involvement.
      Le meas glas.
      Trevor

      Reply

  8. Posted by William SNELLING on March 2, 2010 at 7:21 pm

    Hello. I have definately placed this website in my favourites as last summer I took on a very overgrown weed patch of an allotment. I have worked very hard on it and it is now in perfect rediness for this growing year. I lack experience so am very grateful for your the advice given in your site. The video clips make it all so understandable. Thank you.

    Reply

  9. Hi Trevor,
    Good to see you at Cultivate the other day. We are hoping to start a GIY group after being inspired by Michael Kelly’s activities. I’m a really keen grower, but only a beginner!! If this is going to work I need to find experienced growers who’d like to be involved. Do you think this is something you would like to do?
    I’ve planned the first meeting for Tuesday 13th April 7pm (Michael Kelly will be speaking at Cultivate Eco Fair on Saturday 10th April 2.30pm), The Greenhouse, 17 St Andrew St. The meetings would be once a month. Would be great to have you involved but if you don’t have the time right now maybe you’d know other experienced growers who’d like to take part? Or if anyone reading your blog would like to come to they are more than welcome!!
    We have a facebook page http://www.facebook.com/pages/Grow-it-Yourself-Dublin-City/115278218482360?ref=ts
    Thanks!
    Alice Ryan

    Reply

    • Alice, a Chara,
      Living over 20 miles from Dublin city means I might get along if asked now and again. I do get asked to speak at various GIY meetings around the country and launched the national GIY organisation for Michael & Co in WIT Waterford last Sept with Darena Allen and Clodagh Mc Kenna. Some groups like Naul GIY have asked can they visit http://www.trevorskitchengarden in reality and so my garden inBalbriggan, 37 Tara Cove is open for GIYers at 7pm on Thurs 10th June 2010. You and friends are very welcome, good train service and refreshments too.
      Beidh fáilte romhat.
      Trevor

      Reply

  10. Posted by therese carrick on May 7, 2010 at 5:15 pm

    great site, very helpful, just saw it on your newsletter, keep up the good work

    Reply

  11. Hi Trevor, I learn from your weblog since view month ago , I really enjoy it, now can I link exchange with you? thank’s before. cheers from me 🙂

    Reply

  12. HALLO TREVOR I WOULD GREATFUL FOR ANY INFORMATION YOU CAN GIVE ME ON WHAT I CAN GROW IN POLLYTUNNELL I AM A BEGINNER

    Reply

    • Hi Eileen,
      I notice the Irish Seed Savers website has a ‘starter pack for polytunnels’ in the seed catalogue section which costs from €10 and lists toamatoes, pepers, salad greens and cucumbers along with instructions. Apart from that I see goods books now available in shops as polytunnel growing has increased in popularity over recent years.
      Le meas glas,
      Trevor

      Reply

  13. Trevor I have discovered this site thanks to the recent TV3 interview. I will be reading it regularly in the coming months. We have bought a house in Rathmines, in the context of the downsizing programme, and I have begun to prepare the garden, saving some topsoil from where an extension out back is on the agenda. We will not move in until the work is done, but I am hoping to get the garden ready for an autumn planting of fruit bushes and trees etc.

    We will be spacing the blackcurrants, redcurrants, gooseberries etc in the lawn, in Myrtle Allen mode.

    Any suggestions for what will do against a north-facing wall? Loganberries perhaps?

    Am I right in thinking that plums need to be in pairs, for pollen etc?

    Can you suggest a source of good garden lore and perhaps supplies in easy reach of Rathmines?

    RoyJ

    Reply

    • Roy, a Chara,
      Glad to hear you saw the TV3 interview which I thoroughly enjoyed doing. Good luck with the new garden and the move. Blackcurrants give great return and the currants freeze very easily. I put some straight from the freezer in top of hot porridge every morning right through the year. They thaw to ‘fresh’ within seconds.
      Forest floor ancestors are probably OK on north facing site. Lettuce or parsley for example. I’m trying rhubarb in north side of house under trees. It tolerates and performs OK but does not thrive. Better than nothing however.

      I had a single plum tree and it fruited fine. Victoria was the variety. Plums do not like to be pruned but only prune in summer if necessary. I’d check the GIYIRELAND website to see the nearest group to where you live. These guys are learning by trial and error in soil conditions probably similar to your own.

      Le meas glas.
      Trevor

      Reply

  14. Mt name is Kevin Rickard my son Tony and i are lanching a patented watering system that will save 95% water when growing veg, flora,fruit in garden containers. We are based in Ennis Co Clare and we hope to be in production March of this year. This product will save millions of liters of water in the gardening world and make gardening for children easy as well as increasing flora and veg yeild.

    Kevin Rickard

    Reply

    • Kevin, a chara,

      Best wishes with your watering system business. Any devices or ideas which help us conserve and use water more carefully are good news for everyone. I’d be interested in a brochure if you can send it to me at 37 Tara Cove, Balbriggan, Co. Dublin.

      Le meas glas,
      Trevor Sargent

      Reply

  15. Posted by Sue on January 6, 2012 at 2:24 am

    Hi there. I’d like to know where in Ireland are the most fertile growing conditions to produce the widest range of fruit and vegetable crops (small hobby farm or family garden). I need to know about soil content and chemistry, temperature and growing season, rainfall. I assume there is no arid land in Ireland. Can anyone help me?

    Reply

    • Hi Sue,

      No arid land in Ireland, but sandy areas in parts of east coast can be dry during a rain free spell especially during the Summer. Generally gropwing conditions good especially if a polytunnel or greenhouse is used to extend the growing season and protect against a wet period.

      Regards,

      Trevor

      Reply

  16. Posted by Monica on April 21, 2012 at 3:40 pm

    Trev – it would be nice to have an obvious link on the site to “buy the book” now that you’re getting such great press. Congratulations and cheers! – MG

    Reply

  17. Posted by Trevor Sargent on July 24, 2012 at 11:25 pm

    Thanks. I’ll keep that advice in mind. I have quite a few video clip on this website. You are reminding me I could do more. Regards. Trevor

    Reply

  18. Posted by Trevor Sargent on January 5, 2013 at 8:08 pm

    Very welcome. Good gardening. Trevor

    Reply

  19. Posted by Trevor Sargent on January 18, 2013 at 1:27 pm

    Dear Fellow Grower,

    Delighted to hear you have book marked ‘Trevor’s Kitchen Garden’, the blog. Just back from England where the book of the same name is getting favourable attention, specially in the Feb edition of the UK mag, ‘Kitchen Garden’. Interesting to compare comments from growers in different regions and countries.

    Good gardening,

    Trevor

    Reply

  20. Posted by Trevor Sargent on January 18, 2013 at 1:29 pm

    Dear Ardis,

    Glad you are enjoying the blog, ‘Trevor’s Kitchen Garden’. I’ll keep growing and writing if you keep growing and reading … and writing a bit yourself with comments etc.

    Good gardening,

    Trevor

    Reply

  21. Posted by Trevor Sargent on February 6, 2013 at 12:46 am

    Appreciate the comment Rosemary. Thanks you for book marking ‘Trevor’s Kitchen Garden’. Trevor

    Reply

  22. Posted by Trevor Sargent on May 9, 2013 at 9:05 pm

    Thanks for the encouragement. Hope it helps with your own gardening adventures. Trevor

    Reply

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