We’re now starting year 3 of the kitchen garden, and having mastered the basics, set up our raised beds and got used to growing in a north facing garden, I’ve decided it’s time to branch out and try some new varieties. A mix of classics I haven’t tried yet and a couple of unusual choices I’m excited to experiment with, here are the top 6 vegetables I’m looking forward to growing this year.
An absolute classic for winter soups and stews, I’m hoping that leeks will become a staple of our kitchen garden in future, and an option to supplement the onions we’ll be growing for storing over winter. With the combination, we might finally be able to get through to next year without having to buy any!
- ‘Honey Bear’ Squash
I love squash. It’s a quintessentially autumnal flavour, and I love how versatile it is: from soups, to casseroles, roasted vegetables and curries. It also stores very well over winter, and is a great option to help us achieve our goal of self-sufficiency in vegetables. ‘Honey Bear’ is a small variety, which is ideal for fitting into our small garden, and will be grown vertically supported on a wooden frame.
- ‘Cherry Bomb’ Chilli Pepper
We grew chillies from plants we bought last year, but this time, I am determined to do the full process and grow these ‘Cherry Bomb’ chillies from seed. Aside from the great name, these are attractive bright red chillies with a medium heat. What’s not to like?
- ‘Mini Munch’ Cucumber
I said that we wouldn’t grow cucumbers this year, after the complete failure of a cucumber plant we bought last year. And then I saw the seeds for these ‘Mini Much’ cucumbers, and I couldn’t resist. Mini snack sized fruits, and a chance to try growing them myself from seed. Fingers crossed all goes well!
- ‘Indigo Blue Berries’ Tomato
We had a hugely successful summer for tomatoes last year, growing ‘Tigerella’, ‘Sweet Million’ and ‘Gardener’s Delight’. This year, I have mixed things up a bit, keeping the ‘Tigerella’, but adding a plum variety, and 2 cherry varieties, including these ‘Indigo Blue Berries’. I have never grown a tomato with such a dark colour, but it promises to be full of anti-oxidants and flavour.
These little kale and brussels sprout hybrids have been a delicious new treat for me to enjoy this winter, so you can imagine my delight when I found the seeds online to grow them myself! These will be planted along with a couple of other varieties of sprouts this year, with an aim to see which grow best, and keep our favourites on for the following year.