Growing your own veg in Estremoz can be hard work – the worst bit being weeding! We’ve found that the weeds in the Alentejo are relentless and grow at an astounding pace with the first sign of rain.

You can buy most fruit and veg at the Saturday produce market in Estremoz at really good prices – so it seems a lot of work to prepare the soil, plant the veg, water, weed etc. but on the other hand as my neighbour says: water and sunshine are free.

Three good reasons for growing your own veg in Estremoz:

  • You know that they have not been exposed to any harmful chemicals
  • They have not been shipped in from France, Spain or Holland and wrapped in nasty plastic
  • Most importantly: they taste better when they are yours!

Grow your own EstremozSo we were delighted when our farmer neighbours popped over with a tray of seed potatoes for us – and as the weather was good we set to work preparing the land the very same day.

Home grown EstremozPreparing the land

Out came the 45-year old rotavator – also given to us by a neighbour. The deal went like this: if you can fix mine I will give you this old one. Having a mechanical engineer in the family comes in handy a lot. And we started by turning over the soil and marking out a straight line for the first row of chittings.

Home produced compostFingers crossed potatoes are pretty easy to grow, make a hole, drop the seed potato in and cover with nutrient-rich earth from our compost container. Our soil contains a lot of clay, so much so that when wet you can mould it in your hands, so we added some clean wood shavings to the mix along with the compost matter and watered them in.




Home grown potatoes EstremozFirst signs of success

Two weeks later things are looking good! We planted 84 seed potatoes, which within a few days had started shooting and breaking through the earth. We water them regularly and add a little wee tea every now and again. Keep the cats and puppy off them—and now we have 70+ plants going strong!

Watch this space…



Potatoe planting Estremoz

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