The Gardens, weeds & words podcast, Series 1 Episode 11

Gardens and food

with Victoria Wade

Have you ever noticed that everything tastes a bit better outdoors? Wouldn’t it be great if we could move seemlessly from our houses to our outdoor space, pulling food straight from the garden, preparing it and even cooking it outdoors? I talk to garden designer Victoria Wade about how she makes this possible for her clients.

The bees are making a meal of the flowers in our gardens. It seems only fair that we get in on the act too – it’s wonderful to have a beautiful garden to look at, but one we can also eat? That has to be worth working for.

Some years ago Nigel Slater dug up the garden of his London townhouse and made a kitchen garden there, and his two volume collection Tender talks about the joy that having this closer connection with the food he cooks has brought into his life. There’s a micro review of the first volume, A cook and his vegetable patch, with a reading from the introduction from blogger and keen grow your own enthusiast Richard Chivers, who then joins me for a discussion (really, a minor meeting of the Nigel Slater Appreciation Society) of Nigel Slater’s writing and how it has influenced the way we garden, cook and eat.

And garden designer Victoria Wade talks to me about her relationship with food (and fire!) in the garden, and how she literally builds this into everything she creates for her clients.

I hope you enjoy this episode – please continue to share the podcast on social media, and if you’d really like to brighten my day, leave a review on iTunes or your podcast app of choice. Or drop me a note in the comments section below, having listened on the embedded player on this page.

Gardens, weeds and words podcast, S01E11 show notes

A blend of slow radio, gardening advice and conversation, and readings from the best garden and wildlife writing.

These notes may contain affiliate links. 

Garden soundtrack

Bees on the fishbone cotoneaster

Gardens and food

Micro book review

Tender, Vol 1 by Nigel Slater, published by Fourth Estate 2009

Extract read by Richard Chivers

In discussion with Richard about Nigel Slater’s books, and why you should bother growing your own food. 

Interview with Victoria Wade 14:10

14:40 The importance of food in Vic and Joe’s garden designs

15:12 Cooking over fire

16:33 Design making outdoor cooking easy

17:56 Primal nature of fire, role of fire in the home

18:49 Relax and soften

19:10 Incorporating edibles into planting designs

20:59 Planting style

23:33 Underlying structure and stone

25:12 Foraging – bringing outdoor eating and gardening in the landscape together.

A huge thank you to Vic for joining me on this episode. You can find her here:



Thank you to Richard Chivers, both for the reading and for chatting to me about his Nigel Slater habit, and the effect vegetables are having on his marriage. You can find Richard’s blog here, or seek him out on Instagram or Twitter  


You can hear find the podcast trailer and the first four episodes here, either on iTunes or on Switcher.

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Hello! I’m Andrew, gardener, writer, photographer, and owner of a too-loud laugh, and I’m so pleased you’ve found your way to Gardens, weeds & words. You can read a more in-depth profile of me on the About page, or by clicking this image.