Vegetable Garden

Growing Vegetables with Children

bright green herbs grow closely together in pots.

Vegetable gardens not only bring fresh, seasonal produce to your table and immense satisfaction to your soul, but they can be inspirational and educational for your children. Working with compost, worms, water, seeds, insects, plant growth and the final fruits of your labour instil in children not only the importance of being involved with their…

Growing Sweet, Sweet Corn

Beans growing up corn plants with squash trailing underneath

Well firstly, we’ll establish the difference between sweet corn and the generic term, ‘corn’. Those lush fields of gold blowing in the summer wind I remember from my English childhood were corn, which in England tends to be a collective term for wheat, oats, barley or rye.  Generally speaking, corn in America and Australia means…

Vegetable Garden Basics: Growing Broccoli

a broccoli head sitting in the middle of a large plant, ready to pick

I always think of broccoli as a kind of superior cauliflower, but that could be something to do with childhood memories of English school dinners, where the ‘caulie’ was boiled to death, grey and unappetising. Yeuch. Talking of boiling, broccoli is a mass of valuable nutrients like glucoraphanin, which the body turns into sulforaphane, a…

How to Grow Garlic

A clump of flowering garlic plants

“Tomatoes and oregano make it Italian; Wine and tarragon make it French. Sour cream makes it Russian; Lemon and cinnamon make it Greek. Soy sauce makes it Chinese; Garlic makes it good.” ~Alice May Brock With winter on the horizon, the anticipation of hearty chowders, spicy chilis and rich, filling pastas gets me excited to…

How to Grow Cucumbers – Rambling or on a Trellis

Cucumber vine growing on a trellis, with a single cucumber hanging down in the middle, ready to pick

Crisp, fresh-from-the-vine cucumbers are the epitome of warm summer evenings. From the gourd family Cucurbitaceae, cucumbers can be pickled or sliced and depending on the variety, can be cylindrical or elongated in shape. Traditionally thought of as an out-of-control vine rambling across the yard, it may surprise you to know that cucumbers also grow exceptionally…

Growing Drought Tolerant Herbs

oregano and thyme growing in a larger blue ceramic container, hanging over the edges

Though you may assume that, like the water loving herbs in my last article, all your herbs will benefit from being planted in organic, loamy soil in a sunny area, then fed and watered well, actually some herbs positively thrive in barren conditions.  Native Mediterranean herbs like marjoram, thyme, oregano and rosemary grow best in…

Growing Popular Water-Loving Herbs in Pots

Mint growing in a pot with some lovage struggling in the middle

Following on from Growing A Container Herb Garden, here is some more specific information about growing particular herbs.  The following  herbs all like similarly moist conditions, so could be grouped together in pots, or grown in the same container – though it is probably advisable to grow mint in its own pot, as it is…

Growing a Container Herb Garden

large painted ceramic pots containing mint, oregano, lovage, thyme and lettuce.

Container herb gardens really are the business.  Wherever you live in the world you can take account of your climate and your cooking needs, and get together suitable edible plants in one place, ideally within easy reach of your kitchen.  A container herb garden is quite simply a collection of herbs in one container, or…

Vertical Vegetable Gardening Ideas

Gutter-gardens-image-by-Sarah-G

Vertical gardening is just plain trendy right now, and it’s definitely a trend worth considering.   If you’re green as well as green fingered (and I’m guessing as you’re on Sustainable Suburbia that’ll be about right!) this method of food growing will suit you (up and) down to the ground. The carbon footprint of this type…

Vegetable Gardening Basics: How to Grow Peas

Peas grow on a trellis - seen from above

Peas come in such a wonderful variety which makes growing them a rewarding and fun thing to do.  They grow in a wide range of conditions and like many vegetables, need good rich improved soil and full sun. They are grown in the cooler months and also throughout spring which gives a good cropping period.…

Growing Tomatoes in Pots

Tomatoes Garlic Basil - The Simple Pleasures of Growing and Cooking Your Garden's Most Versatile Veggies, By Doug Oster

No food grower’s garden is worth its salt without a glorious bounty of tomatoes, and they taste even better with a pinch of salt!  This is ironic, as botanically a tomato is a fruit – ie a seed bearing ovary.  More commonly used as a vegetable, tomatoes are a mainstay of savoury dishes around the…

How to Grow Excellent Rhubarb

harvested rhubarb stalks

Although rhubarb looks like psychedelic celery, its striking bushy green foliage against its purple-red stems is a bright addition to the veggie patch or wherever you decide to plant it.  Rhubarb is easy to grow and can be grown from crowns or seeds.  By choosing crowns, which are a fleshy bundle of roots,  you can…

Organic Vegetable Gardening For Beginners

Gardening Australia: Home Vegetable Garden the Complete Guide to Organic Vegetable Gardening, by Annette McFarlane.

Growing your own food is not only self-satisfying and rewarding, but it also provides food security. Using organic methods to grow food ensures that it is free from chemicals and contributes to a healthy environment. Organic gardening nurtures ecosystems and maintains the health of the soil, insects, water and people in the environment. With the…

Perennial Vegetables: Growing Asparagus

a bunch of asparagus spears, tied with a string

Editors note: Between this article and reading Barbara Kingsolver’s discussion of asparagus in Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, A Year of Food Life, I am determined that I will be growing asparagus in my garden very soon!  If you like Asparagus, you are not alone. It may surprise you though, to know that you will be eating…