Episode 8: From Garden to Plate with Anna Greenland


Anna Greenland is an organic gardener. She comes from a family of gardeners and grown the highest quality organic food for chefs such as Raymond Blanc, Tom Aikens and Jamie Oliver. She was the Head Gardener of Soho Farmhouse in Oxfordshire. Anna lives in Suffolk where she has her own market garden. In this episode I’ll be speaking to Anna about her passion for herbs and encouraging people to grow their own.


In this episode, we talked about:

  • Anna’s interest in growing food that came from a move from London to Cornwall

  • The food scene in Cornwall e.g Jamie Oliver and Rick Stein’s restaurants, all looking for fresh produce

  • Supporting local, fresh produce

  • Having the idea to grow and sell herbs and edible flowers

  • Coming from a green-fingered family, so growing is in her bones

  • Her grandmother growing in her 90s and mother being a gardener

  • The impact of having a dad who is into cooking on her passion for growing plants

  • The purpose of medicinal and edible plants

  • Fresh air, exercise and meditation that comes from growing plants

  • You can’t rush plants and seasons, you have to be present

  • Managing thyroid issues

  • Replacing excess expensive supplements with home-grown produce

  • The benefit of dirt for the gut micro-biome

  • Lost connection with the soil and land

  • The challenge of access to land when you’re living in urban areas

  • Community gardens and allotments as a way of gardening in a city

  • You can even grow in a windowsill

  • Interact with something living

  • State of mind from bringing the outside world into an urban environment

  • Sourcing herbs from nurseries rather than supermarkets

  • Peat-fee compost

  • Liquid feed such as seaweed or you can make your own from organic comfrey and nettle although it’s smelly!

  • Mediterranean herbs such as thyme, sage, and rosemary are easier to take care of

  • Growing from seed if you can

  • Slowing down and nurturing

  • Cutting costs through growing your own

  • Gaining experience of traditional methods of gardening and then doing formal training in modern methods in Santa Cruz, California

  • Becoming Head Vegetable Gardener at Raymond Blanc’s restaurant Le Manoir aux Quat'Saisons

  • The episode of Raymond Blanc on the Table Manners podcast

  • The supportive gardening community

  • Instand calm from engaging with nature

  • Teas, tisanes and infusions

  • Lemon balm for lifting the mind after experiencing crippling period pain

  • Dried herbs from Organic Herb Trading Company or Neal’s Yard

  • Herbal honey e.g. infused with sage for sore throats

  • Herbal salts for use in cooking e.g. rosemary, thyme and sage

  • Electuaries are mixed with honey

  • Thyme for mucousy colds

  • Women have held this knowledge for generations to help their local communities

  • Different types of mint such as apple mint, Morrocan mint.

  • Rose geranium infused with hot water or in a sugar syrup

  • Lavender for many uses

  • Touch, taste and smell the plants, especially herbs

  • Having a mindful moment each day


You can find more about Anna and her wonderful work here:

Anna Greenland’s website


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