Choosing vegetable varieties

01 January 2009 | Posted in General by The Marshalls Family

It's that time of year again. When the weather gets grim, I like to peruse the vegetable seed catalogues, checking the availability of my favourite varieties and finding out what's new. I enjoy choosing what vegetables to grow next year, but I try to be restrained - it's very easy to overindulge.

This year I'm writing a list of the types of vegetable I want to grow, and allowing myself a maximum of two varieties of each crop. The problem is, it's hard to keep to this self-imposed rule. I'm always tempted to grow more; after all, early, mid- and late-season varieties are a great way to increase the cropping period of vegetables such as carrots and peas. Also, I love the experimental side of gardening and always want to try those new varieties that are introduced each year. It's good to find space on the plot for some spherical courgettes, as well as cylindrical varieties.

To complicate matters further, my increasingly eloquent and opinionated offspring have clear ideas of their own. My eight year old will only eat cooked carrots if they are a purple variety and they both rule out shop-bought veg for much of the year. At least they're interested, and can be easily co-opted into helping clear further growing space in the garden. Now I just have to pare down that ridiculously long shopping list...

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