Podcast: London, UK – growing on a boat

Boat bounty. A harvest of squash and courgettes from Lewis's boat

In this episode, we hear from Lewis McNeill, who lives on a boat on the River Lee in London. He grows grapes, chillies, squash, tomatoes, herbs and more in containers on the roof. Lewis is also founder of the Floating Growers Facebook Group and works at the excellent Orchard Project.

 

 

Listen to learn more about Lewis’s creative way to maintain soil fertility on the boat: a compact composting toilet! And how he is overcoming the other challenges he faces, including watering, heat, theft and, something that is probably unique to boat growers: low bridges.

 

A harvest of garlic from containers on Lewis's boa
A harvest of garlic from containers on Lewis’s boat.

 

We also hear how Lewis is planting a guerilla orchard along the river bank as he travels up and down. How cool is that?

Lewis finishes by sharing his vision for food growing in small spaces  – and how it can help play a role in climate breakdown by connecting more people to their food, nature and providing healthier food at lower cost.

Links

  • Floating Growers: Facebook group for boat growers – ask questions, share learning
  • Teeming with Microbes by Jeff Lowenfells – inspiring book on the role of micobes in the soil.
  • The Holistic Orchard by Michael Phillips – not really a container growing book but an inspiring read if you are interested in growing fruit.
  • Garden Organic – website for good free advice on organic growing, and extensive range of fact sheets for paying members.

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