January 30, 2014
Barbara Pleasant puts a name to the experimentation I do each season in the garden: novelty crops. She describes her gardening adventures in Why I love Novelty Crops and Growing Something Different Each Year.
I too love to grow the unusual. There’s the challenge of bringing it to harvest and then the delight or disappointment when I present it at table.
For the winter garden this year my novelty crops are red kohlrabi, purple cauliflower, purple artichokes and ‘Bulls Blood’ beets, (grown more for the leaves than the beets).
My garden is small, only about 130 square feet devoted to vegetables, so choices have to be made. But I make room for novelty crops each season. Some, like 'Golden Sweet Edible Podded Snow Peas’ and purple sprouting broccoli have become standards in my garden.
All of this winter’s novelty crops have been declared delightful though the artichokes will not come until April. I saw the seed grown purple variety pictured above at an Oregon farmers market last summer. I was smitten.
What will you be trying when you plant your summer garden? After all, gardening is about experimentation.