London balcony grower gives tips

Hackney resident Callum Saunders founded a gardening blog after he began to grow food on his Balcony.

The London Vegetable Garden follows his progress and has details of how he managed to produce tomatoes, runner beans and butternut squash.

Speaking to the Londonist, the enthusiast explained he has only been an avid food cultivator for 14 months – the period of time he has lived in his current flat.

He said those starting out should try growing a salad such as rocket – which can be a hardy variety.

"All you need is a well-drained container, such as an old ice-cream tub, some soil and seeds and youre off," Mr Saunders stated, adding it can be important to keep leaves well hydrated – especially if the windowsill, balcony or greenhouse is particularly sunny.

He explained those without such facilities need not despair, despite long waiting lists for allotments in the capital.

The enthusiast highlighted the number of community gardens that exist around the city and also suggested offering to help an elderly person tend to their plot.

One other Londoner known to grow his own food is Gordon Brown – the prime minister has reportedly established a kitchen garden in Downing Street.