Real Men Sow

8 Tips for Enjoying the Tastiest Kale


Yesterday was a bittersweet kale day for me. After finding some ridiculously late cabbage white caterpillars munching my garden kale to death, I was pretty despondent.

However, the morning brought a sharp frost, so the leaves would be nicely sweetened. To cheer myself up I headed to mum’s plot to nab some of her kale, which had been unaffected by the pesky cabbage whites.

So I harvested some lush green leaves and headed home with them for tea. Here are 8 tips for getting the best from your kale, whether you’re harvesting or cooking.

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7 Tips for Getting the Most From Tidying Up the Allotment


Over the past fortnight or so, I’ve been clearing the remains of summer away from my plot and beginning the process of manuring the soil ready for winter and another growing season next year.

I’ve made fair progress so far, tidying one bed and spreading compost over the top, and I’m about halfway through another one. Its a job I like to take my time over, and as long as I’m manured by Chrimbo I’m generally happy.

Although a job that can be taken time over, tidying up after summer is still an important one. Here are 7 tips for getting the most from autumn clear up.

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How I Made My Garden Raised Beds

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Three years ago today, I was edging closer and closer to finishing my three garden raised beds.

If you’re thinking of trying raised beds, I’d thoroughly recommend them for a number of reasons, including attractiveness and the chance to control your soil. Since using my beds for the first time in 2014 I’m well and truly converted.

Now is a great time to be out building raised beds. Not much is growing, and the summer veg has been pulled up so the plot will be nice and clear and ready for your structures to be built.

Here’s my rough guide to making a raised bed.

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About Real Men Sow

meIn 2007, I took on a redundant allotment plot with my gardening-mad mum Jan. As all good mums do, she went along with it, but I don’t think she held out much hope.

However, three years on, and she now lets me do stuff without watching over my shoulder, so I must be doing something right. [ read more ]

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Allotment Cakes for the Weekend

  • Allotment Cakes for the Weekend #14 – Courgette, Lime and Coconut Cake
  • Allotment Cakes for the Weekend #13 – Jamie Oliver’s Squash Muffins
  • An Allotment Cake for the Weekend #12 – Lemon Curd & Blueberry Loaf Cake
  • An Allotment Cake For the Weekend #11 – Apple and Cinnamon Flapjacks
  • An Allotment Cake For the Weekend #10 – Fresh Ginger and Apple Cake
  • Good Food Magazine Marrow and Pecan Cake
  • A Rhubarbey Roundup, and Whatever Happened to Allotment Cakes for the Weekend?
  • (Not) An Allotment Cake for the Weekend #7 Rhubarb Crumble Ice Cream

Saving £500 a year!

During 2011, I kept a diary of how much money I save from growing my own fruit and vegetables. After totalling all my outgoings, I saved approximately £500 over the year. I made a spreadsheet to calculate these savings - it’s nothing too complicated, as I’m no Excel guru, but hopefully someone else will find it as useful (and strangely fun) as me. For more info, visit my Money Saving Experiment page by clicking here.


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