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I’ve always looked on grow-your-own types with a mixture of admiration and annoyance.

On the one hand, I can appreciate the wholesomeness of tending to your own carrots. I fully approve of the thrifty savings that go with denying the supermarkets cash for their mass-produced lettuces. And teaching your kids about where veg comes from? Definite win there too.


It all rankles a bit. Mainly because I’m rubbish at growing my own veg myself. I admit I’m jealous of your radishes and the time you’ve spent on your perfectly formed peas. My last attempt at tomatoes ended with green bits of mushy slop all over my lawn. So do you have to wave your carrots in my face all over Facebook, rubbing it in?

That’s the thing. You know those people at work who smugly bring in full carrier bags of beautifully fresh veg they’ve tended with their own fair hand? Why do they do that, except to rub it in for the rest of us allotment-challenged lot? I greet someone with a big stick of home-grown rhubarb in the same way as someone who’s driving a Ferrari: show off.

This time of year is rife with them. You can’t blink without your Instagram feed being full of muddy courgettes and vibrant runner beans. Every kid waving a carrot is a further reminder of my failure as a mother to cultivate a successful vegetable plot in the garden. Your radishes are leaving me sobbing on the inside.

So, I see your carrots. And I raise you.

home-grown courgettes

The biggest courgettes known to man.

But that’s not all. Oh no. There’s more where those came from.

Apples from the gardenBOOM! Apples from OUR OWN GARDEN. Oh yes. And you see that? That’s my child wheeling the fruits of her labour. A scene of domestic bliss from the garden.

My carrots are totally bigger than yours.

We’ll just choose to ignore the fact that the courgettes were grown in my parents’ veggie plot and the apples came from a tree that was planted long before we arrived, OK?