If the sales data from the commercial seedsmen is to be believed, growing vegetables is booming.
All over the country, community gardens are springing up, such as the Tarland Community Garden, and if you catch their open day you will see the variety of crops grown in deepest Aberdeenshire, both in their poly-tunnel and out of doors. Out of that community garden project has grown the Seed Swap and Potato Day taking place on Saturday, February 25 in the MacRobert Hall, Tarland, from 10 to 2pm.
Project co-ordinator, Lizzy Shepherd said: “As an enthusiastic gardener, I attended the Potato Day run by the Glasgow Allotment Forum and was inspired by the success of it to try something similar in the North-east.
“It should be of interest to the members of our community garden and all vegetable growers in the North-East.”
In Tarland, there will 25 different varieties of organic and/or heritage potatoes for sale, and members of the punlic can trial lots of different types because they will be priced individually, rather than in a bag of 25.
There will also be a chance to swap – or just try for free – vegetable and flower seeds saved and collected by local gardeners.
Extra attractions include folk music, teas and homebakes provided by the Cromar Senior Citizens, talks on how to go about seed saving at 11 am, a demonstration on growing potatoes in containers at 11.45am, and a children’s area, where there will be the chance to plant seeds and produce potato prints.
With funding from Foundation Scotland,entry costs £2 for adults, children go free and potatoes will be priced at 20p each.
Anyone who has managed to save seed this year can pick up free seed envelopes to bring along to the seed exchange – the envelopes are at various locations throughout Aberdeenshire a list of which can be found on the projects website, http://www.tarland.org.uk/gone-to-seed/ or on Facebook: www.facebook.com/gonetoseedtarland/