Grow Your Own At Home With Alan Titchmarsh Episode 5

Grow Your Own At Home With Alan Titchmarsh Episode 5

In Episode 5, Alan Titchmarsh is still at his home in his magnificent garden in Hampshire, filming Grow Your Own At Home with his wife Alison Titchmarsh AKA Mrs T Cam.

As Alan says 'nothing tastes better than fresh, mouth-watering home-grown fruit and veg. Freshness, pleasure and achievement'.

With more people having a go at growing their own, this programme helps guide you through the stages from planting to harvesting, whatever size growing space you have.

Alan and Alison Titchmarsh

Joining Alan are the Love your Garden Team of David Domoney, Katie Rushworth and Frances Tophill all filming from their own homes and gardens.

Alan is in his garden telling us what a wonderful time of year it is. The sun is at its best, hopefully some gentle rain and all the plants and flowers are enjoying the ideal conditions to grow.

Alan Titchmarsh

His Strawberry pot he planted in Episode 2 is full of ripening Strawberries.

The secret to his success is to keep the pot moist as they do dry out quickly due to the small planting pockets.

Now over to the veg patch where some of the plants are supported and his Runner Beans are curling round the poles except for one or two which he gives a helping hand. 

Spring onions

Now we are in the maximum growing time, Alan wants to fill any spaces in the veg plot.

In between his leeks and Parsnips he is putting in a 'catch crop' of Spring Onions. these will not compete with the other 2.

Fast growing crops like Spring onions can be container grown in between other crops as they are small and slender.

He is planting them in clusters for ease of planting, you can also plant Lettuce, Radish or Herbs as 'catch crops'.

Kitchen Gardens have always included a mixture of vegetables, fruit and cut flowers.

Alan already grows Peonies in his called 'Pillow Talk' but wants to add some more flowers to cut for the house (and wife).

Peonies do not thrive if planted too deep and they have large tubers that need to be near the surface.


He is adding a row of Cosmos which are quick to flower and will keep on flowering with regular cutting or dead-heading.

These can also be planted in containers and pots in the garden if space is limited.

He plants the Cosmos a foot apart which can be bought from most Garden Centres.

Camera Operator Alison then asks Alan if he wants his head in the shot! Yes he replies laughing. 'Are you fed up with my head'? 'Possibly' she replies laughing uncontrollably.

Dahlia tubers

After watering them in, it is a Kitchen Garden favourite next, Dahlias.

The stunning big heads of the Dahlia comes in all different shapes, colours and sizes and are grown from a tuber.


Dahlia are perennial and can be planted from the end of May until end of June.

Alan plants them on a bed of organic matter 5cm below the surface and adds a stake for support once they have grown.

Frances Tophill lives in Folkestone Kent with her partner and moved to a terraced house with a small, narrow, backyard.

Frances Tophill

She has been transforming this into a pretty, yet productive garden and it is looking stunning.

Everything is growing well, the tomatoes are flowering and the strawberries are nearly ready.

Watering fig

The Fig tree was needing some extra watering so Frances has used a plastic bottled filled with water upside down into the pot to keep its roots hydrated.

The hop plant has shot up the ladder and is loving the hot dry weather.

Todays job is to do something to brighten up the Dining Room window wall.

Frances Tophill window

A 'waste not, want not' window box is not only going to save money and waste but also look attractive.

Using vegetables from her fridge Frances plans to regrow them and reap the rewards by harvesting them again!


She is a fan of propagating from shop bought produce and leftovers you would normally throw away.

By taking cuttings from the plant they can be placed in water so they root and start growing again.

You can do this with Leeks, Fennel, Spring onion, Chicory, Lemongrass and Celery.

re-rooting vegetables

Using the Celery as an example the root end or Basal area is cut off from the rest of the plant, you then put it in a glass and fill with water.

It will take about a week before there is new growth from the top of the cutting.

Some plants are quicker than others to for the actual roots but its good to experiment with a variety of plants. 

These are then put on a sunny windowsill to start growing.

Frances Tophill

Frances has made a window box from left over timber and gives it a quick coat of paint before suspending it from hooks attached to the wall.

She lines the window box with some plastic and fills with compost.

She adds a mix of Spring Onions, Bulb Fennel, leeks then adds some Hazel twigs for some Nasturtiums to wind round and her mini meadow view is complete.

Frances Tophill garden

This is the first time Frances has experimented with putting propagated vegetables outdoors to regrow, so hopefully next time we can see the results.

Alan is keeping a eye out for unwanted visitors in his garden, namely pests!

Pests and disease are the most annoying thing for gardeners, when all was going so well in the garden.

Blackfly are always attracted to Broad Beans, Alan solution is to cut off the soft tender shoots at the top that they go for.

They can also attack Runner and French Beans.

Aphids suck sap from the plants and this damages their growth.

French Marigolds

Natural deterrents like flowers can be used, for example he plants French Marigolds amongst his Tomato plants, as the flowers smell, wards off Whitefly.

Slugs can be a major problem in the garden and can ruin whole crops like lettuce. Alan uses the carved out half of a grapefruit to lure them to the shade, so he can catch and dispose of them.


Slug pellets are harmful for Hedgehogs and birds and are best avoided for more natural methods of control.

David Domoney is at home in Stratford Upon Avon, Warwickshire with his partner Adele Holdsworth and their 3 children, Alice, Abigail and baby Lance.

He has been expanding his vegetable garden to grow all the produce his family like and need to keep the growing family fed.

David Domoney Family

Today is something special especially for the youngest member Lance.

His and the rest of the family favourite is sweet potato and Lance already wants some.

Sweet Potatoes are rich in Vitamin C and Fibre and are great for children.

Sweet Potatoes

It is a bit late in the season but can be planted from veg plants in the greenhouse. 

David has run out of space so he is making some quick and easy cold frames.

These are great if you do not have room for a greenhouse and can store plants over winter.  In the summer, they can be used to grow plants, that need that extra heat.

You can buy them and range from £50 right up to £500 but David 50 x 60cm cold frame will house 4 plants and cost a lot less.

David Domoney

He builds the frame which is taller at the back and then cut a plank diagonally to form the 2 sloping sides.

To make it child safe David is using heat retaining Perspex instead of glass.

He has bought an offcut as it works out a lot cheaper.

cold frame

He sandwiches the Perspex between 2 frames of wood and screws it together. He has left the wood off the front for the water to run off, this is then hinged onto the frame.

To keep the Sweet Potatoes warm David adds layers of compost and grass to the cold frame before planting the 4 Sweet Potato plants.

Keep them well watered and Lance will be eating them in early Autumn.

Sweet Potatoes

He uses a bit of wood to prop it open for ventilation but the 2/3 layer of grass and the sun will keep it warm.

In the second cold frame he is growing Adele favourite, Aubergines that in a good summer will also grow outside happily.


He again plants 4 into the cold frame with each plant producing 5-6 Aubergines each.

Once they are flowering they will need a weekly feed of Liquid Tomato feed to get them to produce the fruit.

David and Lance Domoney

Lance has turned up now all the hard work has been done to inspect his daddies work.

He assists in closing the lid and his work here is done!

Alan and Alison love eating outside in their beautiful garden on a fine Summer day.

Alan Titchmarsh

A favourite lunch is sliced tomatoes and Basil so Alan is making a handy planter of this lunchtime favourite herb.

Basil is the most bought herb in Britain and can be grow both inside and out.

Alan always has a container with a mix of varieties of Basil.

Today he is planting normal 'supermarket' Basil, Purple Basil, Greek Basil, African Blue Basil and Cinnamon Basil to give them variety at lunch.


They do need a sunny spot and can be prone to Fungus so plant them 10cm apart.

Alan has been experimenting with Gin and has found that the Purple Basil put into a bottle with some Gin makes a delicious drink.

Alan Titchmarsh drinking gin

It takes about 10 days to infuse but Alan wastes no time in pouring one he made earlier with some tonic to have with their tomato and Basil Lunch.

Mrs T says she stick to the Rosé! Cheers!

Katie Rushworth is at home in Balidon Yorkshire with her husband Andrew Edwards and their family.

Katie Rushworth

She has been adding vegetables and planters to her stunning home and garden and today she is indoors with something she has not tried before.

Her indoor herb planters have been growing like mad and today she is adding to these using Hydroponics, space age with no soil just water grown.


Katie has 2 different kits ranging in price to try and to see how they work out.

The basic model still costs £65 but includes everything for seed growing.


To the base unit you add water with liquid feed, on top of this is a basket containing the growing medium and your seeds.

Due to its size it will only fit a small plant or maybe some herb seeds, Katie is sowing Parsley.

Research says things grow 20% quicker and produce more.


Put in a sunny spot it takes about a week before green shoots appear.

The bigger budget model has its own artificial light so can be used anywhere.

It costs £189 and feeds and waters itself so once you have sown the seeds that is it!


in just 4 weeks you can grow 4 different herbs or vegetables.

Katie final addition for her home is some indoor plants that help oxygenate the house.

Plants photosynthesise and turn carbon dioxide back into Oxygen and she is planting Sanseviera 'Mother-in-law Tongue' that does it overnight so is good for having in bedrooms.


She puts them in a large pot and covers with gravel/grit.

She also plants Devil's Ivy and a Spider plant.

Katie done all this in her slippers and indoors so you really don't need a garden to garden.

Alan Titchmarsh

Alan finally gets his reward for his hard work, his first Strawberries picked and ready to eat. I hope Mrs T gets some too.

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