Tysoe Walled Kitchen Garden

Welcome to the Tysoe Walled Kitchen Garden website! We are committed to organic gardening. Using the best practices from the Victorian days (i.e. lots of horse manure) and knowledge gleaned from the Ryton Organic Gardens we have set out to tame our Warwickshire clay. It’s all about sustainability, so as well as organic gardening, we’re always looking to better ways to work with our environment.

On this site you can find out about our history and the projects we are working on. You can come visit the garden and learn about organic gardening. Follow our blog to see what’s on our mind in the garden this month.

For the first 8 years all the work was carried out by just the two of us. Now we have help and are passing on our knowledge to students on the WRAGS (Work and Retrain As a Gardener Scheme).

We also find time to be involved with the WOT2Grow Community Orchard in Tysoe and have planted a 3 acre wood close to Tysoe, just over the border in Oxfordshire with a grant from the Woodland Trust.

Tuesday, August 2, 2022


 A wonderful vegetable and easy to grow.


What a month, not only the hottest on record and the ground is so dry and cracked, plants drooping and going crispy.

But we had 2 open gardens for charity during the two months, including an evening visit from a local gardening club. The weather had cooled and it was a very pleasant evening, tea and cake included!

We also opened  one Saturday for the National garden Scheme (NGS) charities along with 2 other gardens in the village and raised over £700 from admission, refreshments, donations and  plants sales. So glad that it was not any later as it just got hotter and hotter. The grass was still green then, brown now!


Sunday, July 3, 2022


When I was young my mum was the real gardener but I remember my dad did one thing, prune the roses. They were in a rose border with nothing else, but the roses were carefully tended each year.

I never liked roses very much until about 15 years ago when we moved to this garden.

We have lots of walls to cover so my daughter gave me 2 climbers and a rambler for my birthday, chosen for their names.

Alfred Carrier, a quite rampant rose, growing over an arch, so has to be pruned back when high winds come in the autumn, the scent is wonderful.

Penny Lane, a lovely white climber, once the flowers die back the hips are lovely over winter.

The rambler Alberic Barbier a real rambler and flowers May and into July, repeat flowers occasionally so an even longer flowering time.

When we moved here there was a lovely red climber which we moved when it was in the way of a new wall and it survived and flourished. No idea what the name is but it grows well each year, flowers for weeks and I have taken several cuttings from it which are in other parts of our and others gardens.

Add to that the 25th wedding anniversary present rose, a very tall red rose given to us by a friend and a very special rose. Joanna Elise, this rose was chosen by a group of friends from a breeder in Yorkshire. This was in memory of a friend's daughter, who died in an accident whilst travelling abroad.

Joanna Elise

Last year I treated myself to a new rose, Tottering by Gently by David Austin, an unusual open flower unlike most roses, I love things that are a bit different.

Saturday, June 11, 2022


 Honeysuckle, a useful plant to climb up a trellis, shed or wall.

The first honeysuckle I had in this garden was an unknown evergreen variety, given to me as a cutting by a friend. Leaving it in a jar of water for a while and it started to grow roots. Then grew in a pot until big enough to plant outside. A robust plant and easy to propagate I now have 3 plants in the garden. You need to keep cutting them back if you want to contain the plant to a particular space but to have green all winter and the fragrance all summer long is exquisite.

As I said it is a robust plant, a few years ago we had very strong winds and the honeysuckle, which was growing up a wall and over the arch of a gateway, came off the wall.

What to do? I chopped the whole structure down to about 60 cm from the ground. It grew quickly that summer and over the next few years I have kept cutting it down a bit each year gradually building up a strong base. It is now back to as it was, covering the wall and the arch over the gate. Hopefully it will not fall again.

My second honeysuckle was also an unknown variety, deciduous and found as a seedling growing in the garden. It must have grown from a seed, probably deposited by a bird, next door have the same one growing up the wall so that is probably the parent plant. It has taken several years to settle down but this year it has grown really well and looks wonderful.

Finally a more unusual variety this is called Jazz, originally came from a garden magazine offer.
This is deciduous and has the most unusual flower formation.

As the flowers die you get the seeds forming but as with the flower, it is encased in a cup like circular leaf.

Monday, June 6, 2022

Free Fertilizer

 We garden organically and try to find everything we need from the crops we grow.

Comfrey is a wonderful plant. The plant grows to  1m  high and the lovely flowers are usually covered in bees.

It is a perennial and dies down completely in the winter, giving space to clear any weeds that may have been hiding under the foliage.

The best thing about comfrey is that you can easily make a wonderful liquid fertilizer not just for tomatoes but anything else you grow. It is high in potassium and so is brilliant for any thing that fruits or flowers.

The traditional way to make this liquid is to chop up the leaves, stalks etc. into a bucket, push down to get as much as you can in the bucket then cover with water. Place a heavy weight on top to keep the leaves underwater and put it aside somewhere for several weeks until you have a nice dark liquid. One problem with this wet method, it stinks!

I no longer do this but still get litres of the fertilizer by using the dry method.

I made this system from an old pallet, old wide drain pipes, a plant trough, brackets and a plastic tap.

We have 5 tubes as we have a large garden but the same method could be used with a single pipe for smaller gardens.

The chopped up plant materials, stalks, leaves and flowers are pushed down the tubes and then left. After a week or so the tubes will look almost empty so keep topping them up with more comfrey plant. You can cut the plant to the ground several times during the season and if you have several plants there will always be some for the bees.

After about 6 weeks I am now collecting the liquid, 2x 2 litre bottles filled today. No smells!

Then dilute to a weak tea colour and feed the plants

Just continue to add more plant material throughout the growing season and you will get plenty of the fertilizer.

Friday, May 27, 2022

Colour in the garden

 We have just put the roof on our fruit cage, it took the two of us 2 and a half hours! It is a large cage but protects all our currants, raspberries, blue and black berries, peaches and kiwi from being eaten by the birds. Climbing ladders and walking on the top of walls, I am probably getting too old for this!

The garden is changing daily and more flowers coming out. The peonies are in bloom and looking great.

The first sweet pea is in flower, seeds sown in January and grown in the greenhouse ready to plant out at the end of April.
Roses coming out now too. This is Johanne Elise and will be covered in buds and flowers all summer.
I also have several climbing roses, which cover walls and arches all summer. 

As for the edibles we now have almost daily asparagus, lettuce, the first broad beans, coriander and strawberries for breakfast!

Thursday, May 19, 2022

Moving On

 It only takes a bit of rain , well 22mm already this month, a few warm days and everything in the garden is getting greener and bigger.

The angelica is doing well this year, tall, full of flowers and buzzing with bees. A pity we are not opening the garden for the NGS until July this year. (usually first weekend in June) The flowers will be seed heads in a few more weeks and then need dead heading before all the seeds spread and become an angelica forest next year!

It is also asparagus time and we are picking between 1 and 2 kilos each day. We eat some ourselves, delicious fried or roasted in a little olive oil or chopped up into stir fries.
The remainder we put on our sales trolley which gives local people the chance to buy our organic produce a very reasonable prices and no air miles!
The money raised from the sale of the fruit and vegetables and plants we donate to various charities each year.
We only pick the asparagus for approximately six weeks and then leave the stems to grow and put back goodness into the plants ready for next year. So this special crop is appreciated in this short availability window.


 A wonderful vegetable and easy to grow.