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Everyday Foods That Will Help Your Garden Thrive This Summer

What makes a Garden Room really special is knowing that it looks out onto well-tended, beautiful surroundings. Did you know that contrary to common belief, winter is actually an ideal time to prepare your garden for the summer? All of our early preparation tips make use of food scraps, a great but underutilised resource for fertilising your garden. The only problem with this, however, is that not everyone has room in their garden for a compost bin. That's why we've selected everyday food items you can add to your garden beds with no treatment whatsoever.

Used Coffee Grounds

All plants need fertiliser to flourish, but using them excessively can easily damage plants. Used coffee grounds are a great alternative. As they decompose they act as a much softer fertiliser, releasing nitrogen, potassium and other essential minerals plants crave to promote growth and longevity. This makes them great to add to your potted plants or any of your plant beds.

Used coffee grounds can give an extra boost of nutrients to any plant, but are particularly effective on leafy vegetables, roses and azalea. It is important to keep an eye on coffee grounds when you use them - if they are too moist, they can turn mouldy and will need to be removed before they damage the soil.   

Coffee Beans Close Up

Banana Peels

Packed full of potassium, calcium and magnesium, banana peels not only provide your plants with an extra boost of nutrients, they also promote photosynthesis and help keep aphids at bay. A great tip is cutting your used banana peel into small pieces and placing them in a mason jar, filling it with water and allowing them to sit for a week. This will help release all the essential nutrients from the banana peel that plants love. Pour the jar's contents into the soil and watch your plants flourish.

Old Spices

Don’t throw away your spices if they’ve past their prime, instead try putting them in your garden to keep pests and animals away. Cinnamon, chilli powder, dried peppermint and even salt are known chemical-free alternatives to warding off garden pests. You can even create your very own insecticide spray by infusing water with thyme or rosemary. If you're interesting in using spices in your gardening make sure to apply them regularly, otherwise they could be washed away by that regular British rain. 

Spices Close Up


Eggshells are rich in calcium and nitrogen. These are great for plants and work towards thickening plant cell walls, which helps prevent rot. However, it's essential you prepare your eggshells correctly to maximise their benefit.

After cracking your eggs, give the shells a good rinse to ensure all residue is removed. Place them in the freezer overnight to kill any bacteria, and then lay under a kitchen towel to break up into smaller pieces. Scatter these within your soil rather than sprinkling on top to get maximum benefits. If you want to make it as easy as possible for your soil to absorb nutrients, you can use a blender to make a fine powder from your eggshells.

Wood Ash

Wood ash piles can build up, especially during the winter months. This abundance has positive benefits for your garden, as ashes from fireplaces and wood burners provide a valuable source of potassium amongst other nutrients. When worked with your existing soil, the ash can be used as a mulch around your most ornamental plants. One important note however, is that wood ash should be added to plants that prefer alkaline soil such as asparagus, parsley and okra. Avoid using it on plants such as raspberries and roses, as these prefer more acidic soil. 

Roses Close Up

These are just a few tips to help your garden flourish by the time summer rolls around but if you're looking for more advice about growing vegetables, fruits, herbs and general gardening, please visit Allotment Garden Growing.

Keen gardeners come to Crane Garden Buildings all the year round, whether they want a space to tend their projects, or a luxurious Garden Building for a view to sit back and appreciate their hard work. All our garden buildings include free delivery and installation as part of our complete end to end service. Why not visit one of our UK Show Centres and view our full collection? 

If you are interested in our garden buildings but have a few questions, please get in touch with us.

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