If you are anything like me than you are always trying new varieties of vegetables and herbs in your garden. Also, if you are like me, this is the time of year to drool over seed catalogs, sort through old seeds and get excited about Seedy Saturday (for details on Hamilton’s Seedy Saturday visit: hcgn.ca/seedy).
Trying new plants doesn’t always work and but below are a few of my favourites for you to try so you can add a little something different into your garden this year:
Romanesco has to be one of the coolest looking things you can grow in your garden. This member of the cabbage family grows a head that looks and tastes like a cross between Broccoli and Cauliflower. The plants grow similar to Cauliflower, with the head tucked beneath some leaves in the centre of the plant. The best part about Romanesco is the amazing fractal artwork that form on the head; when you look closely you can see it is covered in little spiral patterns.
Wild Bergamot (Bee Balm)
Bergamot is an amazing plant, growing pretty tall (up to 3′) and putting out a large amount of purple flowers. As you get close to a flowering Bergamot plant you can actually hear the buzzing from all the bees it attracts. I have never seen as many bees on one plant as I have with Bergamot. The flowers also smell great and can be made into tea.
Lima Beans are more finicky than most other beans you can grow in your garden but they are worth the effort. Lima Beans grow a little different than bush or pole beans, almost like you mixed the two together and got a wispy bushy plant. The beans form in fuzzy pods which grow so abundantly they cause the plant to droop over. You can eat the beans fresh or let them dry by pulling up the whole plant (before frost) and hanging it upside.
Melons are one of the best parts about summer; snacking on a fresh melon on a hot day is so refreshing. We are lucky, there are a huge variety of melons or all shapes and sizes that can be grown in the Hamilton area including: Watermelon, Cantalope, Bitter Melon, Honey Dew and more. Make sure to give melon plenty of space to grow because these plants grow like squash and tend to take over.
Colours and shapes and sizes… Oh my!
Not sure you want to try something completely new? Many vegetables and herbs come in different colours, shapes and sizes. Adding variety and colour to your garden is easy, here are a few ideas to get you started:
- Purple, red, white and yellow carrots
- Orange, white, yellow and black cherry tomatoes
- Blue potatoes
- Yellow and striped beets
- Black, pink and white radishes
Come to Seedy Saturday and find something to new grow!
February 22nd, 11am – 4pm
Pioneer Memorial Church, 1974 King Street East, Hamilton
Featuring a seed swap and seed vendors, gardening workshops, kids activities, refreshments and a chance to win great prizes.
Go to our event page for all the details: hcgn.ca/seedy