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See it grow - Tomatoes

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Just add water and see it grow, grow bags, everything you need to begin growing your own.

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      28.08.2012 10:17
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      An easy to grow, growing kit

      I love gardening and I love growing things, it probably comes as no surprise to anyone given the fact I have an allotment. For the past 5 years I have been going to The Hampton Court Flower Show with a work colleague of mine, it is a really enjoyable experience and I always manage to come away with some really funky items for the allotment and one or two very cool plants that I liked the look of.

      A few years ago I came across a company called 'See it gro' who had a stall at the Hampton Court Flower Show and they claimed to have the 'route to quick and easy gardening' and at the time had an offer on their products of 3 for 2. I am all for quick easy gardening, not that such a thing really exists, though the idea is a very nice one to have after sending hours of your time digging away and bashing weeds which refuse to leave your allotment alone.

      The product I bought, the 'See it Gro' which does also happen to be the same name as the company, is to all intents and purposes a compact mini grow bag and when you purchase it either online or via their stall, it is no bigger than a box of Milk Tray chocolates and each package measures just 18x18x5cm and because it is all compacted to make it easy to carry around and store until you need to begin to use them. So if like me, you live in a flat or have a very small garden with limited space for growing things, this might just be the answer to all your problems and a solution to encourage you to have a go and growing a few things.

      So why grow your own? Well if you haven't noticed recently, food prices have become quite high, especially in the vegetable section and it is also a right pain if you begin to make your dinner or any sort of food and you are lacking one ingredient like a tomato that you could just pick off your plant instead of having to get yourself ready to go down to your nearest supermarket or local store which sells fruit and vegetables. I have also found that growing my own fruit and vegetables is actually really relaxing and being able to potter about on my allotment, also away from the hustle and bustle from everyday life which is really busy, is also really relaxing and it helps you to forget about life and its daily issues which can get you down. More importantly, for me anyway, there is nothing quite as satisfying as eating your own, home grown fruit and vegetable because they taste so much better than the stuff you buy in store, honestly, it does.

      See it Gro currently offer six different options when it comes to the grow bags and each bag is a different colour, so they certainly do liven up your living space. So whether you want to grow tomatoes, chillies, peppers, strawberries or herbs which are the five products on offer currently have on offer and if you opt for tomatoes then your 'Gro bag' is a vivid red colour, herbs are in a blue bag, chillies are in a green bag, peppers a yellow one and finally strawberries are in a pinkie coloured bag. Then more recently came the silver 'Gro bag' which hasn't been designed for any one thing in mind, you can buy any seeds such as carrots, raspberries or even plants such as lilies to use this bag for.

      When you have purchased your 'Gro bag' which you can buy online from places like Amazon for £3.99 or I bought three for £7 at The Hampton Court flower show and I opted for Tomato, Herbs and Strawberries. Within the herb one you get basil, chives and parsley seeds to grow in the one bag, if you prefer to grow them separately then you can simply purchase more seeds. My 'Gro bag's came with the seeds and I didn't feel the need to buy anymore, buy you can.

      Once you have your 'Gro bag' home you simply unwrap it and place it on a flat surface such as a table or a floor and then as you open the top of the bag, which at this stage will still be flat, inside you will see a rough kind of product inside and this is known as Coir. Coir is taken from the husk of a coconut and this company have a factory in Sri Lanka from which they get their Coir. You need to make sure that the square block of Coir is in the centre of your grow bag and then very slowly start to add 2.5 litres of water, as you do this, you will need to make two or three drainage holes which will allow the water to flow right through the coir and once you have done this, you should see the coir begin to expand and as soon as it has nearly filled the bags and looks soft and fluffy, that is when you will have added enough water. It is at this stage that you need to decide where to put your 'Gro bag', the instructions advise you to ensure it isn't in direct sunlight.

      Once your bag is in place and the water has soaked right through the coir you make a hole in the centre of the coir and add the seeds. You might also need to have purchased some plant food and the person who sold me the 'Gro bag's explained that with the tomatoes you need to use a fertiliser high in potassium and if growing strawberries it is best to use a fertiliser high in calcium, then for everything else a general all purpose fertiliser is fine. I actually bought the products from the stall at the time to use and even though I do use plant food when on the allotment, it never hurts to ensure you have enough and it definitely helps your plants grow much healthier. You also need to ensure that you water the bags regularly and ensure you use the plant food probably every 10 days or so.

      So having lined up my three bags on my concrete terrace and looked after them as I was told to do, I am pleased to say that not only was the growing process easy, there was no weeds or bramble roots trying to force their way through to ruin your day, instead you have lovely vegetables and herbs ready to eat and use on the food that you make and best of all they are right there in your garden.

      Also for those of you like me who want to be more green and strive with their very best efforts to do so, once your 'Gro bag' as come to the end of its fruition, the coir which is inside can be mixed in to your flower beds, or in my case within my plant pots for my flowers and the 'Gro bag's, whilst made of 100% recycled plastic can either be re-used if you buy some soil and have another go, or I have used one of them as a covering inside my composter to keep the contents warm.

      So, have you always wanted to grow your own but don't have the space, the time or don't know where to start? Well here you go, the easy way to garden and get great results for little cost. I totally love these grow bags and even though I have an allotment, I will continue to use them because you can never have enough tomatoes and the ones which came off my plant using this grow bag were absolutely delightful. The herbs are still in the 'Gro bag' and I use them as and when I need them and they have flourished in the rain and still look fantastic.

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