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Vivi’s Kitchen Garden: Pruning: blueberries, herbs and rose.

Another job that was delayed in February – pruning! Hurrah for some snipping time during a beautifully warm and peaceful day. I tidy up all the dead flowers and herbs plus prune the rose and my blueberries.

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Beyond Frugal! Prepping for a wage-free life.

Today I’m going through all sorts of ideas and tips (based on my own experiences) for you to try if you’re aiming to have a wage-free life at some point….the ideas also apply if you want to retire early (small fixed income) or simply to get rid of some of your debts (mortgage/credit cards etc). How far you take any of this is up to you and your end goal…….and how motivated you are to get there. I’m also setting you a challenge! A no-spend year! You can do it!

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Vivi’s Kitchen Garden: Looking back…..March last year.

Continuing in my series of looking back to this month last year…we’ve reached March….the month that was the beginning of everything changing and becoming a bit more challenging for all of us. My Taunton Deane perennial kale had become a bit of a monster…this was the perfect time to hack it down and donate all those gorgeous leaves to a local free veggie box scheme….little did I know it at the time but this was just the beginning of sharing food, time and love whenever possible.

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Vivi’s Kitchen Garden: What to sow in March.

Hurrah for March and much more choice and possibilities for seeds sowing….especially if you have a greenhouse or polytunnel (unheated even). It’s still early for me to sow much as I tend to sow a lot of things direct because of lack of greenhouse (and window sill space!)…..but here are a bunch of ideas for those of you who do. Plus a few jobs to get on with in March.

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Vivi’s Kitchen Garden: Couve Tronchude (Portuguese Cabbage) + to chit or not to chit.

After a few weeks of bad weather it’s time to get back to the garden. So many lovely friends to see and catch up with…..and between times I deal with my delivery of seed potatoes ( to chit or not to chit!) and some lovely cuttings from my friend Paul….including two of his Portuguese Cabbage (also known as Portuguese kale or Couve Tronchuda). I’m particularly excited about these as I’ve never eaten them before and they will form the ‘backbone’ of a dish called Caldo Verde……a favourite soup of Portugal. You may also know this plant if you’re a fan of the TV series ‘A Victorian Kitchen Garden’. I can’t wait. Oh! And I nearly forgot…….news on the extra water tank…….

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Vivi’s Kitchen Garden: Peppers & Potatoes.

Hurrah for some more seed sowing……it’s still really early in the growing year but at least I can start my peppers (and chillies and aubergines if you are growing them). They need a bit of warmth at the moment so I’ll show you my propagators. I also take delivery of my seed potatoes and describe, briefly, what to do with them now, before planting time. The peppers I have sown are all sweet types from my own saved seed and are all suitable for growing outdoors with no extra protection: Orange Bell, Feher Ozon and Doux Longe des Landes.