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Soaring food prices are one reason to grow fresh produce at home but it has many more benefits according to horticulturalist David Domoney. No matter whether people are experienced in the garden or don’t have one at all, the Love Your Weekend with Alan Titchmarsh star explained that it’s much easier than people think. Speaking exclusively to Express.co.uk he said: “It’s amazing just how much you can grow in a small space and growing from seed is the only thing – if anyone hasn’t gardened before, they think growing from seed is jumping in at the deep end but it’s far the reverse. You tend, you engage, you have an excitement about the beginning of a life form, a plant, and you have a tendency to see it through than when buying something in a pot.”

Both fruits and vegetables are easy to grow from seeds and there’s a host of different ways to do it, using as little or as much space as gardeners have.

And according to David, Britons are “spoilt for choice” when it comes to “windowsill gardening”. He said: “Any form of growing plants needs just a few things. It needs warmth, it needs air, it needs moisture and it needs soil in some cases to anchor itself down. So a simple container with peat-free compost has the ability to grow any plant anywhere – and we’re doing it in outer space at the moment.

“Having the opportunity to utilise a windowsill inside of the house ticks quite a few boxes. You get the light that’s coming in from the outside, you get the warmth of the house as well. All you have to do is put a seed tray or a pot onto the windowsill, sow the seeds and water it. It pretty much does the rest for you.”

While the gardening expert urged people to consider whether their home is too warm, he noted that microgreens, bean shoots, mung beans, and herbs will  “grow comfortably in a jam jar”. And it’s incredibly easy to do.

David explained: “Cress for example, you can grow in a bit of tissue paper on a saucer that’s been dampened. You just sprinkle the seeds on top and they will germinate and grow into a crop for you to eat. And things like basil, parsley, coriander and chives, are accustomed to warmer climates – you know Mediterranean plants. Therefore they are suited quite well to being grown indoors.

“The secret to all of these things is they’re a cropping plant. They’re not like houseplants that you leave to look good. The nature of the plant is to be cropped to keep it looking tight and good. So I would say the windowsill has all the ingredients for growing certain types of plants that can be used quite comfortably for culinary purposes.”

Cress is a personal favourite of David’s and people will find it growing in his own kitchen right now. Speaking about his love for such a simple and “rapid” germinating plant, he noted that his favourite way to serve it is with scrambled eggs and crusty granary bread.

For such a small plant, cress is “incredibly nutritious” too. The gardener said: “There’s more vitamin E than broccoli, more vitamin C than orange and cress itself has more calcium than even milk – it also has more folate than a banana, so it’s incredibly healthy. Not only that but by growing yourself you’re getting much better flavours, making your household much more self-sufficient. There’s a reduction in the plastic of course involved in that, so all of those combined are good for the planet and good for the person growing!”

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It’s not just cress that Britons can grow quickly either. While David highlighted that there are “no quick results” in nature, produce that germinates quickly includes mung beans, basil, chives, flat leaf and curly parsley, and bean shoots. And all of them can be planted now.

David said: “The best thing about growing plants indoors is it’s not overly seasonally specific. Obviously, there’s an increase and decrease in the light but when it comes to growing herbs it’s different.

“Just to be clear, your windowsill is not in direct sunlight and doesn’t have a radiator underneath because obviously there are extremes in temperature on both scales there. So you can start all of them straight away.”

For extra colour, the gardening expert noted that people can even try rowing radishes inside right now. He explained that while they “won’t get many in the space that they have”, they’re one of the many ingredients people can grow “all year round on their windowsill.”

If people want to expand their gardening skills into the garden itself, there’s, even more, to choose from when picking out what to grow in March. The Love Your Garden star said: “You’re in the month! Everything stipulates the warming of the soil, the increased light levels, and the reduction of frost – those are the triggers.”

“So things like seed potatoes you can start now. On your windowsill, you can start germinating your tomatoes, your chillies, peppers, peas and beans. It’s the month – this is it. The whole horticultural calendar springs into life at this time so everything is open.”

In his own home, the celebrity gardener has a wealth of fresh produce growing throughout the year.

And some of his favourites are fruits including raspberries and strawberries. Along with red currants, blueberries and gooseberries, they can all be grown outside at this time of year.

According to David, this is part of the “magic” of giving gardening a go in spring. He added: “And however we complain about our seasons in this country, the balance of our seasons makes it perfect for growing.

“I’m sowing at the minute so I’m sowing my tomatoes, peppers, and peas – they’re all in the greenhouse. I’ve taken strawberry runners for my next generation of plants – I take those and I’ve potted up 60 of them. I’ve also got my potatoes chitting which initiates the young shoots before putting them in the ground.”

Loved by the whole Domoney family, David noted that strawberries are a “brilliant” choice, particularly for people that haven’t grown anything before.

He said: “They’ll grow pretty quickly. And it’s a lovely flowering plant as well as an edible plant and we all become a kid at heart when we put strawberries in the garden. You just don’t get the same experience buying things in the supermarkets.”

TV gardener David Domoney is heading up the Mr Fothergills “windowsill gardening” campaign to encourage new people to grow veg indoors and save money. To find out more about growing on your windowsill head over to https://www.mr-fothergills.co.uk/windowsill.

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