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About Me

My garden is relatively new. We moved out to France in 2004 and when we bought this cottage it didn’t really possess any land, yet alone a garden! After some friendly negotiations with the farmer we bought over 1 hectare or just over 3 acres! Not all of it was converted into a garden l hasten to add but l quickly dug over an area about the same as an average allotment and have since divided this up into deep-beds.

We have five hens who are totally free range. We have seen the fox nearby but l don’t want to keep them in a small run. When you see them scratching about in the field and having dust baths you realise they just have to take their chance the same as everything else. If the fox gets one then of course l will be upset but l will know that at least it had a really good free life. We get 3 or 4 eggs a day. Bertha a big Holland Blue, has never laid an egg and is just a pet. Some say she would be good for the table, and in a time of war she probably would have been, but l could never do that. Since writing this we have lost Bertha and one other to the fox.

So, just for fun, l have decided to follow the gardening advice of Mr Middleton who gave regular radio broadcasts during the Second World War encouraging the nation to ‘Dig for Victory’. Week by week l will try and carry out some of the tasks as detailed in his book ‘Dig on for Victory’. Most of his advice is still relevant today. I find this period in history a fascinating time; the people of Great Britain knew that they all had to pull together in order to survive. The ‘Dig for Victory’ campaign is just a small part of that story.

This year l am also reverting back to my favourite method of producing vegetables and that is in raised beds. I find this a great way of gardening as you never walk on the soil you are growing produce on thereby reducing the compaction, the area you need to feed is clearly defined and you can grow more vegetables in a smaller area because the plants have a better root system.

A good crop of leeks

The more time you spend working in your garden the better you get to know it; taking time to stop and stare and really get your hands into the soil and there is no better feeling than when the soil is warm and you plunge your hands deep into the earth, knowing then the time is perfect to sow anything you want with the confidence of success. It should smell sweet and the soil should be friable. If you can experience this when you are a child the memory stays with you forever, well it has for me!  Slowly, you and your garden become one. You come to respect and nurture it. Why would you want to smother it with poisonous chemicals to kill everything there is when for most situations there are organic alternatives? The garden is your very own eco-system. Look after your garden and your garden will look after you by providing you with good, fresh produce with zero food miles and just a few food inches!

I feel we all still have a lot to learn from our forebears who struggled to grow their own, not as a hobby but as a necessity. Gardeners in WW2 made a huge contribution to the war effort by growing their own produce. Methods used back then still apply today. I hope you enjoy following my journey on the Dig for Victory campaign.

Runner Bean crop

Drying potatoes

Me & Bertha

A few years have passed since writing this introduction and we have now returned to Blighty! We had a great time in France, met some great people and not so great, traveled France, Spain, Portugal and Morocco crossing the Atlas Mountains and into the Sahara Desert in a motor home. It was a good adventure but we are both so happy to have returned to English shores. We are still renting but feel it won’t be too long before we find a home of our own. Until such times l am putting Mr Middleton on hold and resume when l have my own plot again. In the meantime I will try and write up on other Home Front issues and bits about my life. 

 

22 responses to “About Me

  1. annie

    March 16, 2010 at 22:34

    So pleased I stumbled upon your site, it’s brilliant and what a great idea. I look forward to following it.
    Good luck

     
    • trevorhunt

      March 17, 2010 at 06:29

      Thanks Annie. It is always nice to get some positive feedback. A very busy time here at this time of the year but will try to keep the content going! Do you have a garden?

       
  2. Katie

    March 18, 2010 at 11:58

    This blog is so wonderful. Please keep posting.
    I adore growing my own fruit and veg.

    Good luck. Best wishes
    Katie

     
    • trevorhunt

      March 18, 2010 at 12:58

      Thank you Katie. I have always loved growing my own produce too. I am busy planting new potatoes today. Post to follow!

       
  3. annie

    March 19, 2010 at 18:28

    Hi Treavor…is that your name?
    Yes I have a garden, but a little one, all of 10’x30′ but I have squashed a lot into it, a pond, log pile planted with ferns and home to many things, lots of bird feeders, flowers and of course fruit and veg.

    Hope you dont mind, but I posted a link to your site on a forum I use the other day when I ‘found you’, and someone else there already had it booked marked! So you should have plenty of followers this year.

    Cant believe how many spuds you have in that photo above, I grow new potatoes in pots, no space for more but they are very tasty :o)

     
    • trevorhunt

      March 19, 2010 at 19:20

      Hi Annie,
      You nearly got it…its Trevor lol. I can’t believe you have so many things in your plot! Good on you. Thanks for the links. My blog is just a bit of fun but l honestly believe there is an air of the ‘Dig for Victory’ campaign in the country at the moment with so many people wanting to grow their own food. New figures show this week that sales of veg seeds are way above that of flowers. So if my blog inspires anyone else to have ago then that is great. How the people of Great Britain managed to go about their everyday lives during the Second World War and grow their own food amazes me. I do wonder how we would cope today?

       
  4. ninasgardeningnotebook

    April 10, 2010 at 21:55

    Hi and thanks for stopping by my blog. I find what you are doing quite fascinating and look forward to following your progress. Your garden looks beautiful and how lovely that it is in France. Lucky you! I have often dreamt of living a French rural life.

     
  5. chicaandaluza

    May 20, 2011 at 17:27

    Hi Trevor, what a wonderful blog you have. Sounds like we are trying to do pretty much the same with regard to growing things and chickens – I´m just doing it in Andalucía! Will be keeping up do date with your posts and reading through the past ones in the next few days – this is right up my street! A bientôt, Tanya

     
    • trevorhunt

      May 20, 2011 at 21:54

      Hi Tanya, Thank you for calling by. One of our hens is an Andalucian! As you can see on the blog, the hens got into my veg plot so l have decided to pass them on to my brother-in-law. we are also planning on returning to Blighty so it is one thing less to worry about. I’ll be interested to see your blog and how you get on down there. Have a great weekend.

       
      • chicaandaluza

        May 22, 2011 at 18:26

        Hi Trevor, shame that you´ll have to leave behind all your hard work when you move back to the UK – but I can imagine you´ll start up the next garden pretty quickly! The Andalucian hens are great , really good layers. Am glad yours have gone to a good home…

         
      • trevorhunt

        May 23, 2011 at 17:12

        Hi Tanya, The girls are still with us! It was too hot to be in the car on Saturday so we will keep them for now. You are right, l am really looking forward to a new challenge and would love to create a real Dig for Victory garden complete with Anderson Shelter. Mad or what!

         
  6. chicaandaluza

    May 31, 2011 at 21:27

    Hi Trevor, Just wanted to say “Congratulations! You have been awarded The Versatile Blogger Award” by Chica Andaluza. Go to http://chicaandaluza.wordpress.com for more details. Love your blog and as part of being awarded it, I am asked to pass it on. Take care, Tanya

     
    • trevorhunt

      May 31, 2011 at 21:53

      Hi Tanya, Gosh, Thank you so much for the recognition. My first ‘Award’ for my blog’! Much appreciated.

       
  7. Andrea

    June 19, 2011 at 19:43

    Hi there, what a great blog to stumble upon,I always wondered about the dig for victory story and am going to enjoy following your posts. Happy Gardening!!

     
  8. elaine rickett

    June 24, 2011 at 12:43

    I too have Mr. Middleton’s book on my shelves its pages are extremely yellow and smelly. I refer to it quite regularly and love the ‘Adam the Gardener’ cartoons. I think you have picked an original theme for a blog. Wish I had thought of it first. Good luck!

     
    • trevorhunt

      August 3, 2011 at 13:23

      Thanks Elaine. Nice to hear of a fellow Middleton fan out there!

       
  9. foodblogandthedog

    August 3, 2011 at 12:44

    Thanks for visiting my blog so I could find yours. I’m really jealous of your vegetable garden. We only have a roof terrace so I grow a few things in pots but would love to do it properly. I walk my dog around the fincas where we live and get inspiration from what I see growing there. I will be stopping by for inspiration, hopefully you’ll keep it up when you move back to the UK?

     
    • trevorhunt

      August 3, 2011 at 13:26

      Hi Foodblogandthedog, great name, yes l will continue but maybe not as regularly as l have done what with the move from France back to England, moving in, and not forgetting…finding a job! An exciting time but also a little anxious.

       
  10. SmallHouseBigGarden

    January 15, 2012 at 16:54

    Such a wicked good idea for a blog!! So many gardening blogs are similar…but this!!…this is unique! i know i’ll check in often!! (great list under your “ministry of webs” area, too)

     
    • trevorhunt

      January 15, 2012 at 18:59

      Thank you so much! I hope you continue to find it interesting. My posts might be a bit sporadic for a while at least until l find my new garden!

       
  11. ian

    July 29, 2012 at 21:13

    hi i like your site, i to have now got my hands on dig on for victory and just going to try it out on my new allotment . I like the idea it gives a weekly guide

     
  12. susan

    May 5, 2013 at 14:20

    pleased that i found your site. my grandfather knew cecil henry middleton. they lived not far from one another. he always told me they was cousins as his grandmother was a miss joanna middleton

     

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