The Geach family have lived and worked on Trerethern Farm set up high above Padstow for more than 130 years. Now the sixth generation farmer is at the tractor wheel with the same simple objective: to provide seasonal produce of unrivalled taste and quality.
Being a chef and having an appreciation of good quality seasonal produce should, without question, go hand in hand. It not surprising then that Ross Geach’s long, family agricultural heritage first led him to Rick Stiens’ restaurants in Padstow.
“I worked for Rick and Jill Stein for over 12 years, gradually working my way up from kitchen porter to head chef at Rick Steins Café,” says Ross. “But with the help of my Grandad I started growing salad and herbs as a hobby at the family’s farm in my spare time.”
As produce become more abundant, Ross started selling surplus bags of salad to fellow chefs, eventually swapping the heat of the cooking pans for the farm to run Padstow Kitchen Garden full-time in 2007. He’s been supplying local restaurants with salad and veg ever since, with his catering background helping to forge good relationships with the many local chefs he works with.
Today, Padstow Kitchen Garden grows a huge variety of vegetables which find their way into some of the county’s finest restaurants and cafes. But it hasn’t always been easy. “So far, every year has been different and I’ve had successes and failures depending on the weather and growing conditions. It’s been a huge learning curve and a constant challenge.”
But all of this puts him in the perfect position to pass on his knowledge to others by offering veg gardening courses starting this summer.
Kitchen Garden courses
Whether you have a small plot, an allotment or a larger growing space, a course with Ross is designed to help you establish your own kitchen garden – a passion for all things green-fingered is the only thing required! Days are tailored to suit your requirements and include lunch prepared by Ross himself, to be eaten while enjoying the fantastic views of the Camel Estuary from the farm.
Course dates are listed online, but parties of 8 or more people can arrange a specific date coinciding with your stay – please give Ross a call and he’ll see what he can do. Courses start at £65 per person.