Category Archives: gardening

Chocolate anarchy: how one Grenadian producer is sweetening the deal on chocolate

The packaging room at Grenada Chocolate Company
The packaging room at Grenada Chocolate Company

Willy Wonka had it easy, compared to Grenada’s artisan chocolatier Mott Green.

Sure, Wonka had to deal with awful Veruca Salt and vermicious Knids, but he didn’t have to make his chocolate in the heat and humidity of the Caribbean, and on an island that has the most expensive electricity supply in the world.

Mott Green set up the Grenada Chocolate

A long-awaited visit to the Duke of Cambridge Organic Pub…

Duke of Cambridge pub InteriorSo, after six years living in North London a hop, skip and a jump from the Duke of Cambridge organic pub in Angel, I finally made it there for dinner this week…now that I live four miles south of the river.

The pub has a staggering list of awards and credentials, including being the only UK pub certified by the Soil Association; creator of the first fish policy to gain Marine Conservation Society approval; London Dining… Continue reading

My 10 favourite gardens at Chelsea Flower Show 2011

strawberry mountain
Strawberry mountain

I loved Chelsea Flower Show last year so was keen to go along when the Bermuda Department of Tourism invited me. Last year, most of my favourite gardens were big show gardens outdoors, but this year I made more time for the exhibitors inside the floral marquee, and found lots of interesting smaller gardens. Here’s the 10 I liked best overall this year (in no particular order):

1. The tunnel of clematis of all different shades of purple and… Continue reading

Eco-friendly food trends: organic, local, or biodynamic?

Claus Christensen, owner of Doep organc hot-dog stand in CopenhagenI’ve just got back from a fascinating trip to Copenhagen – it was my first visit to the city and I was blown away by the commitment the city and its residents have made to sustainability. I visited several fantastic organic restaurants, including BioMio, where menus emphasise the immune-boosting, energy-boosting or libido-boosting properties of every dish, and even an organic hot-dog stand, Doep.

It was intriguing to compare the terms and concepts we use to… Continue reading

When is an fritatta an omelette?

Fring swiss chard with a little garlicLast weekend, I was perturbed as to how exactly I could use the Swiss Rainbow Chard that I’d ordered in my Farm Direct box.

Following a helpful suggestion from Mr James Litston, I have this lunch-time pan-fried it with a little garlic until it softened (I cheated and sliced the tough stalky bits out).

Then I added two of my free range eggs from James Murdoch’s Duck Lane Farm, some salt and pepper, and… Continue reading | 2 Comments

In today’s delivery of farm fresh deliciousness…

Box of fresh veg and produce from Farm Direct

I’ve just received my next box from Farm Direct and it’s another corker. Some of the new products I’m trying:

–  Free range eggs from James Murdoch’s Duck Lane Farm in Cardington, Bedfordshire

–  An amazing walnut and apricot loaf from Matt Jones’ Flour Power City Bakery in Surrey Quays

–  Red, green and yellow peppers from Ted’s Veg Farm in Bennington, Lincolnshire. Hurrah for these being in season in… Continue reading | 2 Comments

David Bellamy on conifers and the importance of encouraging countryside careers

I was at a holiday park in Cumbria on Saturday as part of Haven’s Big Green Weekend, and got chance to speak with environmental campaigner David Bellamy, who was there to host a wildlife ramble for kids.

Bellamy has come under lots of criticism for his controversial views on climate change – he’s said previously that he doesn’t believe in man-made global warming, and that glaciers are actually advancing, not retreating.

I certainly don’t agree with him on this, but the Green… Continue reading

My first box of fresh loveliness from Farm Direct

My first box of fresh produce from Farm Direct arrived yesterday which was hugely exciting.

Joining a ‘veg box’ scheme has been on my list of green things I really ought to do for a couple of years but when I checked it out it seemed extremely restrictive – having to commit to the same thing every week, prohibitively expensive, or limited in what they offer.

But at the Camden Green Fair a few weeks back I visited the Farm… Continue reading

Sustainable hotels with Inkaterra, and a sustainable lunch in South Ken

Inkaterra's Reserva Amazonica, PeruI went for a lovely lunch with a Peruvian hotel group called Inkaterra today, at a restaurant called Bumpkin in South Kensington.

Inkaterra has some of the most exciting, sustainable hotels in Peru. It all started in the 1970s with Inkaterra Reserva Amazonica right in the Amazon jungle. Next were La Casona in Cusco, part of the super-luxury Relais & Chateaux collection, and Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel right by Machu Picchu. Inkaterra has now launched another sister brand… Continue reading