FIVE MAIN VEGGIES FOR YOUR GARDEN

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They all have their own views on this, but there is some unanimity on this. In the early weeks of a first organic garden at home, there is good advice on the main vegetables to be planted in your backyard. There are fundamental and common sense reasons for this. The main reason, I gather, is that these vegetables are the equivalent of perennial flowers, meaning that they can be growing in your garden all year round, and that, due to folks being so busy these days, the versatile vegetables have that innate ability to take good care of itself, without much input from the domestic custodian.

•    BEANS – The ability to grow such vegetables all year round is also indicative of good practice on your part. If you have young, growing children in your family, this vegetable will delight them as they watch it grow. You can regale them with the old fairy tale of Jack and the Beanstalk while you are about it. The fun aspect of this plant is that green beans, for instance, can grow to ginormous proportions.

•    CUCUMBERS – I have included this special vegetable for another reason. And that reason is clinical and/or hygienic. It is one of those unusual vegetables that have an extremely high content of water. Cut up two slices from your first harvest; place it over your eyes to de-stress nicely. There you go. It also rejuvenates and cleanses the skin. And it is really wonderful making your own organic pickles which, I am told, are great for blocking out potential flu bugs making the rounds in your neighborhood at that time of the year.

•    CARROTS – I am an old fashioned gentleman in my kitchen, so I have to include this sturdy vegetable in my organic garden. You see, I love the stews my mum used to make for us. I find that along with the traditional addition of potatoes, carrots are rather complimentary. While I have to watch my intake of too much spice, I have also found that carrots work well with traditional Indian curries, hot or mild.

•    LETTUCE – We all love a barbecue, and we all love a nice, fresh green garden salad to go with our free range mutton chops. And the nice thing about growing your own lettuce organically, free of pesticides and chemicals, is that those lettuce leaves that do sometimes shrivel or fall by the wayside are marvelous for compost and for fertilizing the rest of the vegetable garden. That reminds me, think also about adding small green or red cabbages to your garden as well, cauliflower too. I would be a little cautious about the larger ones. Remember the fairytale. Like enormous pumpkins, you would not want the largest of cabbages to dominate your precious gardening space.

•    TOMATOES – I have left this old boy for last because it remains one of my favorite vegetables. Because of my culinary preferences – that reminds me, I’m cooking up a pasta sauce, all organic of course, for my supper tonight – I generally prefer to have a nice batch of tomatoes ready for use. The tomatoes remain famously popular in most traditional Italian pasta recipes and are also highly nutritious when added to the stew or curry pot. Fortunately, I do not have any problems with high acid content, so I love to indulge myself with the baby tomatoes being tossed into my salads. It’s good for my prostrate and it’s high in vitamin C.

Of course, there is plenty more where these all came from. There are many other versatile veggies, like potatoes and squash and onions that can be included on your preferential list. Also, with some practical experience, and reading practice as well, you will learn in good time which vegetables are perfectly suited to your city or town’s local climate. I suppose one can’t really do without the onions, so best to add those in too.

But take extra care over them. You could also add radish and garlic, them being part of the onion family and all. Small baby marrows and patty pans too. They are part of the squash family.

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