From beetroot and mange tout, to flavourful salad bags with bright edible flowers, to herbs and spring onions, The Plot offers produce grown within 8 miles of Lancaster Town Hall. 

It’s been an exciting month for The Plot. North Lancashire’s new market-garden has begun delivering its produce to shops such as Single Step and offering veg for direct purchase through the Open Food Network webshop – find it at foodfutures.org.uk/shop-the-plot.

Each week the webshop is updated on Monday and orders close on Wednesday evening at 7pm. Orders are then available for pickup on Fridays at a few locations, including at the farm gate at Old Holly Farm. 

The Plot is a regenerative farming initiative, training growers and providing support to set up farms around the District in order to get more seasonal, local, healthy food options on our plates.

Sam, one of the trainees, gives an update: 

“…We were all amazed by the physical and psychological change that was wrought as we hoisted supports, framed the rows with wood-chip, and pushed plants into ground that had, up to that point, been recalcitrant… Runner bean, courgette, and squash seedlings that were bursting to get out of their protected surroundings … These summer residents all have specific requirements, so The Plot has sprouted cane scaffolds for the beans to clasp onto, and, along with a dollop of muck each courtesy of our neighbours the cows, weed barrier is in place to keep the cucurbit plants off the cool damp soil. Elsewhere on site, weeding has sidled in as a weekly task, alongside sowing and planting: free the spring onions/ carrots/ beets/ leeks/ agretti!

“…the French beans, cucumbers and courgettes are racing away, while the tomatoes have been pinched back to keep them on the straight and narrow. They’ve been joined by chillies and basil, and, a real sign of summer – the plants now have a way to keep their feet cool, with a soaker hose snaking through under the soil. Particular thanks are due to the volunteers helping there to keep everything happy with watering visits.

“We ended June with a real tipping point: our first harvests and sales through the Open Food Network… our expert trainer was back too, this time giving us the insider track on quality control and harvest estimation as we bagged salad and bunched turnips.”

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