Volunteers at the Kitchen Garden in Marble Hill Park brought in potatoes for chitting ('chit' means seed or sprout). The seed potatoes will keep warm and dry in the shed for a few weeks and they will begin to sprout before being planted out in the garden. This is one of several ways in which gardeners seek to prolong the very short growing season of the British climate. New varieties this year will be Sharpo Mira, Accord, Kestrel and Picasso in addition to the more familiar Charlotte, Ratte and King Edward.

Winter is a relatively quiet time in the garden but there are always jobs to do. We edged the strawberry bed and re-set the netting around the onions and garlic. We also welcomed a new member of the Ranger's team with a jar of Ruth's wonderful home made green tomato and ginger chutney!