Buyers home in on kitchen gardens, orchards and vegetable patches

Homes with some sort of kitchen garden (or the potential to have one) are now key selling points for country house buyers in West Sussex.

As a vegetable grower myself, I have so many fond memories of when my two sons were growing up. We had an impressive patch at the back of the garden where we grew all sorts – potatoes, beans, courgettes, radishes, asparagus, carrots, tomatoes and various types of lettuces to name a few. We also had apple and plum fruit trees and a herb garden. For them it was an adventure, from watching the vegetables grow over time to digging them all up. I don’t think the potatoes lasted more than ten minutes before they were washed, cooked and eaten!

I still enjoy growing my own herbs today. As I write this, I have just poured myself a cup of refreshing mint tea in the summer sun using the mint from my herb garden. I also love to cook with my own ingredients such as parley and rosemary. Not only do I find it therapeutic, but I think there’s something incredibly rewarding about enjoying homegrown food as it takes time and a lot of patience. Knowing exactly where your food comes from also adds to the appeal.

It would appear I am not the only one who adores this farm to table experience. When the nation was hit by the various Covid-19 lockdowns, people of all ages made the most of their gardens by unleashing their green-fingered thumbs and growing their own fruit and veg. This new trend of creating fresh seasonal produce at home made its way into the world of property too, giving sellers of country houses a competitive edge. When showing my clients around such homes over the last couple of years, I have seen more buyers comment on vegetable beds, orchards, kitchen gardens and green houses, than ever before. I have even been asked about soil types! Interestingly many of these are families who want to do exactly what I did with my children. It’s a fun way for young one’s to learn about the joys of home grown food, whilst gaining a greater connection with where their food comes from.

Village and market towns with allotments are very popular now too – so much so that there are often waiting lists to get your own plot. Lodsworth, Graffham, East Dean, Lavant, Chichester and Petworth are just some examples of areas offering local residents the chance to grow their own seasonal produce. Allotments also bring a fantastic community spirit, where neighbours can make friends and socialise together.

Growing your own fruit and veg is not just about enjoying home-made food, however. There are many physical and mental health benefits too. Combine these with the fact that food costs and energy bills have soared, I believe this is a trend that is set to continue for a while yet.

If you are looking for a country house with plenty of space to grow your own fresh ingredients, perhaps I can help. You can contact me on 07776452128 or e-mail