How much food can you realistically grow in a flat?

Over the past few weeks, I've managed to do a lot.  I've binged on lots of Netflix/Prime/Apple TV shows, read books, written up a business plan, and revised my ultra marathon plan, to improve my half marathon times!  When this lock down ends, I will be more productive.

Even my recycling is now more organised, so onto the next chapter - what can I realistically grow in my flat/is it worth it?


  • -taff
    -taff Forumite Posts: 14,166
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    have you got a balcony?
    Shampoo? No thanks, I'll have real poo...
  • newlywed
    newlywed Forumite Posts: 8,255
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    Herbs and lettuce/rocket on the window ledge inside?
    working on clearing the clutterDo I want the stuff or the space?
  • DireEmblem
    DireEmblem Forumite Posts: 930
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    I have a large window ledge in the Kitchen, well lets say the window itself is a metre wide, so I could hang baskets outside that.
    I also have a utility room that is mostly empty, it houses the boiler and washing machine, although that has a small window.
  • twopenny
    twopenny Forumite Posts: 4,883
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    Utility room is probably a non starter unless you want to try mushrooms or rhubarb :-)
    If you can organise a window box and use a decent compost like John Innes 2 which will hold water you could grow Tumbling Tom tomatoes. Small sweet ones on short trailing stems. Add some Basil if it's not too windy or keep that inside and you have ingredients for salsa. Easier than that would be chives, you can get garlic chives too which are great for salads or scrambled eggs. Lovely flowers too.
    What you will have to watch with a window box or baskets is that when you water the soilly water doesn't drip onto windowsils bellow. Also if it's likely to dry out quickly moisture retentive chrystals to add to the compost. Remember to use some liquid plant food after the first 6 weeks.
    Looking at Google Images should give you some ideas on what containers would be safe to put outside a window. Others are bound to have done it.

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  • RAS
    RAS Forumite Posts: 32,109
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    Ok, the utility room is useful for getting seeds started, particularly in winter. Find some peas, even the ones sold for marrowfat peas. If you can find a ready meal container that had sauce under a perforated strainer with other ingredients above, great, if not choose a tray. Germinate the peas by soaking in water (2 days) and grow in a cm of compost or vermiculite in the window. Harvest for pea shoots 4 times and jettison.

    Then learn about sprouting other seeds like alfalfa in jars, although they need rinsing twice a day. A lot depends on which way your window faces. Where is the sun at midday?

    Also check out cut and come again salads and microgreens.

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  • -taff
    -taff Forumite Posts: 14,166
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    What do you like eating that's expensive but could be grown by you?
    Shampoo? No thanks, I'll have real poo...
  • silverwhistle
    silverwhistle Forumite Posts: 3,756
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    What -taff said. You aren't growing calories, you are growing flavour and freshness. For example you might be able to grow a chilli and nothing like taking a fresh one off the plant when you're cook something spicy.
  • skogar
    skogar Forumite Posts: 592
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    Not tried growing it from seed yet but a pot of basil in the kitchen or suitable selection of herbs makes a big difference when you are cooking. I normally buy a basil plant from the supermarket about now and find it lasts till about October. This year I'm hoping to grow my own - will see if the seeds germinate.
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  • MoneySeeker1
    MoneySeeker1 Forumite Posts: 1,229
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    Two books to check out (if you can find them):
    "Self sufficiency in a flat" by Joy O.I. Spoczynska
    "Year-round indoor salad gardening" - Peter Burke

  • Andrea9876
    Andrea9876 Forumite Posts: 9
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    You can grow loads of herbs in pots including mint, basil, coriander, oregani, rosemary and parsley. Also chilli's and mushrooms as others have said.I am going to try growing chilli's from seeds harvested from the supermarket chilli'sI have after watching Gardner's World at the weekend. In the 1970s I remember an aunt successfully grew an aubergine in a pot. I think it was a craze at the time. I am going to try tomatoes indoors and see what happens as they like a greenhouse and I have previously grown them in a pot outside. I understand they don't really like rain. And there's always cress! 
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