Growing your own vegetables in your garden can provide you with fresh and flavorful produce. As a bonus, it also offers many of the same benefits as other gardening activities. Not only does it promote a varied and nutritious diet, it can also save you money on food bills. Plus, your vegetables will taste much better than supermarket-bought produce. There are also many more varieties to choose from! It is the perfect hobby for any garden enthusiast.
Cucumbers are a good example of a versatile vegetable. Cucumis sativus is the species that gives cucumbers their name. In most people’s minds, cucumbers are synonymous with slicing and pickling varieties. However, these varieties aren’t exactly the same. Pickling cucumbers tend to be smaller and have waxy and prickly skin, while sweet crisp seedless varieties have smooth, wax-free skin. There are also Asian burpless cucumbers, which are similar to European seedless varieties but are more suited to garden culture. Specialty varieties are round or white, depending on the variety.
Many gardeners start their gardens with small plants called transplants. Unlike seeds, transplants allow you to grow vegetables earlier, even if they’re not the easiest to grow. Tender vegetables, such as tomatoes, may be tricky to grow from seed, and require a long, warm growing season. And, seeds are much cheaper than transplants, so you’ll have much more variety. And you’ll never run out of vegetables! You’ll never run out of delicious and healthy vegetables, and you’ll be able to share them with friends and family.
When starting a garden, you’ll need to choose the correct climate for your region. In Missouri, most vegetable crops are annuals, and have a fairly warm climate. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t start growing them earlier. A simple guide to planting vegetables in Missouri is the MU Extension publication G6201, Vegetable Planting Calendar, which gives you recommended planting dates and basic nutritional information. Whether you’re planning a large-scale garden, or a small backyard, the weather will determine the best time to start seeding.
In addition to a variety of greens, consider growing lettuce. Some of the most popular ones include mustard greens and collard greens. These are great for salads and stir-fry and are high in nutrients, calcium, and iron. Greens are best steamed or sautéed to avoid a sulfurous odor. Lettuce is low in calories and rich in Vitamins, folate, magnesium, and potassium.
Cauliflower and broccoli are among the easiest vegetables to grow. Both produce flower heads, which are mostly consumed. Cauliflower does not reliably produce secondary shoots. It takes 50-80 days to grow a mature head. If overgrown, cauliflower can turn yellow or purple. In any case, the flavor is still bitter. And it grows best in cool climates. If you’re looking for a versatile, year-round vegetable, cabbage is the perfect choice.
Tomatoes are one of the most popular garden vegetables, and they require a small area and bear throughout the growing season. Tomatoes are easy to grow and have many culinary uses. Many tomato types are bred for different uses, including slicing for fresh table use and processing for canning. Tomatoes are also categorized into cherry and plum varieties, depending on their use. To select the best tomato varieties, you should consider disease resistance.