Guernsey's "Hedge Veg"

When exploring Guernsey you will come across many small roadside stands selling fresh local produce.  These are an island-institution known fondly as "Hedge Veg", because most examples are islanders selling surplus vegetables from their gardens in a small stall (with an honesty box for payment) in their front-hedge.  These little shops come in all shapes and sizes, from large covered-stands in gateways selling a wide range of produce, through to shelves screwed to garden fences or even just some bags of produce stacked on a front wall.  Jam jars, milk churns and petit cash boxes act as tills, with users trusted to take the correct change.  Hedge-Veg stalls showcase the freshest seasonal produce, and depending upon the time of year you’ll be able to find them stocked with a crop of potatoes, tomatoes, courgettes, broad beans and apples, or perhaps some more unusual vegetables or fruit.  You can also sometimes find a lot more than just fruit and vegetables, however - these little stands can boast a whole range of delights grown and produced locally; some islanders stock their stalls with homemade jams and preserves, fresh flowers, honey, eggs or cakes, and on some occasions you will find a small fridge or cool box containing sausages or perhaps some freshly caught crab or mackerel.  This is shopping Guernsey style (without even stepping foot into a supermarket!)  In fact, lots of islanders will often plan their shopping trip to go via their favourite hedge veg stalls, with some stalls being well known for particular produce. There’s no queue at the tills here - you just pop the money into an honesty box and carry on to your next destination.

Our island is really proud of this tradition and it’s a wonderful example of Guernsey’s community spirit, but it’s not just for locals to enjoy.  If you’re visiting Guernsey on holiday then you can make the most of our Hedge Veg by picking up some fruit to snack on during a walk, or maybe taking home some honey or jam as a little souvenir of your visit.  We hope that the tradition of hedge veg continues to thrive for many years, as it’s such a wonderful part of the Guernsey experience.

To find out more about what’s available and where during your visit, the Genuine Guernsey Produce Facebook page is packed full of the latest Hedge Veg finds.  

Written by:

Bella Luce