Based near Sheffield, UK, Rob Smith is a passionate fruit and vegetable gardener and columnist for several national gardening magazines. He has also made television and radio appearances, sharing gardening advice from sowing and planting to pickling and preserving crops. With Video Grow Guides on his prolific website, Rob also shares seasonal and plant-specific advice for both new and experienced gardeners. With month-by-month steps to show you what you should be doing for your indoor and outdoor plants, Rob ensures you’ll be ready to grow and harvest your crops at the right time. And, with delicious fruits and vegetables at your fingertips, Rob also provides free downloadable recipe cards to help you savor all your hard work. A true guru of all things home-garden, Face the Current was thrilled to speak with Rob about choosing the best fruit and vegetable varieties, including heirloom options; the importance of knowing when to harvest; learning about and experimenting with crop preservation methods; and how to find the balance between helpful and harmful garden insects.
From your inspirational childhood helping your granddad to where you are today, how did your passion for gardening and devotion to sharing your experience with others evolve?
“To be honest, I think I’ve always been interested in how people grow differently and share experiences. From multi-sowing beetroot seeds in modules and growing peas closely together in a tray to plant out as bare root plants, there are so many ways to grow— it just depends on what works for you. I think when you grow on an allotment or community garden, it allows you to just have a chat about what you are doing, then this leads to sharing knowledge over the garden fence.“