10 Best Beginner Plants


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written by little veggie patch co – july 01 2020

extract from our question and answer with the australian.

10 best beginner plant heirloom seed starter pack

Read more: Getting Rid Of Ants: Should You Kill Ants In Your Garden

 1. mint – heirloom mint seeds

what makes mint so easy to grow?  it loves water and isn’t fussy for sunlight, so a damp, semi shaded space – aka your b-spot – will do just fine.
 
how could i stuff it up?  by being a fool or perhaps just yourself? mint doesn’t like to dry out and needs space to creep. give it time to settle and don’t be so impatient.
 
what’s the smallest space it can grow in?  mint has rigorous root growth and so will appreciate a pot that is at least 30cm deep and in diameter. not to say it won’t grow in something smaller but will get matted quick fast and you’ll then need to upgrade.
 
how long before i’m enjoying mint juleps at cocktail hour?  1 -2 months. but go easy at first and don’t strip the guy bare getting carried away.
 
if i have to go interstate for a few days and can’t water it, will it die?  much like that immortal creeping lawn – kikuyu – mint will mend itself following neglect, and better than kikuyu it isn’t itchy, it’s edible and only has one syllable.
 
could i train my toddler to do all the work?  between toddlers and mint, the love of water is mutual. your toddler will drown the thing and mint won’t mind it a bit. it’s a match made in heaven.
 
do i have to read a book or anything to get started?  no, but little veggie patch co’s vegetable gardening books should be read regardless…
 
what the hell will i do with all the surplus mint?  if you don’t already have one, look to develop a drinking habit that peaks in the summertime. mojitos aren’t really suited to winter nights by the fire.


2. silverbeet – ‘rainbow’ swiss chard heirloom seeds
    
what makes silverbeet so easy to grow?  i’ve no bloody idea it just is. this is the ego boost for all hopeless gardeners. you know that friend who’s not quite as good looking and so, as a team, you always get more attention at the bar? silverbeet is better.
 
how could i stuff it up?  much like that girl at the bar who is going home with either you or your lesser looking friend (who doesn’t happen to be funny by the way), you could only stuff it up by being a pretentious and obnoxious wanker. the same applies with silverbeet.
 
what’s the smallest space it can grow in?  doesn’t mind being packed in a tight spot, but remember you won’t need much as one or two plants will provide plenty.
 
how long before i can harvest?  give your plant two months to find its feet and it will keep you happy for 6 or more months.
 
if i have to go interstate for a few days and can’t water it, will it die?  it will look like death but keep bouncing back. and even if some of the outer leaves pass away, pull them off the plant and the younger inner leaves will come on through.
 
could i train my toddler to do all the work?  don’t bore your toddler with such bland fodder. do it yourself.
 
do i have to read a book or anything to get started?  for one, don’t read the little veggie patch co’s how to grow food in small spaces. it won’t get you excited about growing silverbeet at all.
 
what the hell will i do with all the surplus?  make some friends and then be prepared to loose them by hounding everyone with your excess silverbeet.


3. leafy greens- leafy green seed bundle
   
what makes leafy greens so easy to grow?  they don’t need much sunlight and they like to be packed in together. they love city life!
 
how could i stuff it up?  not picking them fast enough and so they bolt off to seed.
 
what’s the smallest space it can grow in?  leafy greens are the champions of small space growing. small pots, wall units, that little gap in between the bigger stuff…you get the idea.
 
how long before i can harvest?  in warmer weather it will only be a matter of weeks before you’re pickin’ leaves and makin’ salads.
 
if i have to go interstate for a few days and can’t water it, will it die?  it won’t die, but it will bolt to seed and taste so rubbish it may as well have carked it.
 
could i train my toddler to do all the work?  water, not too much heat
worry, keep picking, don’t take long holidays…i know your toddler is advanced but this may be a stretch.

 

do i have to read a book or anything to get started?  nah.

 

what the hell will i do with all the surplus?  pile up your excess in bundles of 100g and then put them in plastic bags labeled ‘organic fresh salad greens’. sell them for $5 at the local supermarket and prepare for retirement.



4. zucchini- ‘black beauty’ zucchini heirloom seeds

  

what makes zucchini so easy to grow?  give this guy space, enough sunlight and water and within a few weeks you’ll be bragging to your neighbours that this gardening caper is a piece of zucchini cake.

 

how could i stuff it up?  grow too many, too close together. these are big boys, and realize that one with enough space will outperform 3 crammed in together. less is more, yes my child, less is more…

 

what’s the smallest space it can grow in?  being a little greedy, you’ll want 50cms squared minimum and then he’ll probably still overstep the mark.

 

how long before harvest?  at about a month mark you will be watching your flowers form in great anticipation, a few weeks lately the small fruit, and then from about the second month onwards it’s weekly meals of ratatouille.

 

if i have to go interstate for a few days and can’t water it, will it die?  nah, they’re pretty tough. all gourds have an inbuilt defense mechanism that lets them switch off to the sun when necessary – you will notice them ‘playing dead’ on those hot, summery days.

 

could i train my toddler to do all the work?  one of the difficulties of growing zucchini is pollination, and so disturbingly they may need to be hand pollinated. it could be a little early for the birds and the bees talk.

 

do i have to read a book or anything to get started?  maybe watch a video instead. we have a zucchini video that we think it pretty neat, can we put in a link?

 

what the hell will i do with all the surplus?  ratatouille, mock telephones or find gourmet traveler’s ‘zucchini’ edition and go nuts. pickled zucchini rocks.



5. cherry tomato- ‘tommy toe’ heirloom tomato seeds

what makes cherry tomatoes so easy to grow?  fool proof harvest, assuming you don’t loose interest or kill it before it gets to that point.

 

how could i stuff it up?  even if your neglect its needs and let it sprawl out into an organic tangle of mess, it’ll still produce fruit, but then the overwhelming urge to rip the messy thing out will cut that harvest short. happens every year.

 

what’s the smallest space it can grow in?  as a vertical grower, let it climb and save your blue chip real estate for those that need it. allow for 50cms squared, but some basil can encroach on this parameter. they like eachother a lot.

 

how long before harvest?  give it a couple of months to get started but then it’ll produce fruit to the point you can’t stand looking at red, ripen’ ‘n sweet cherry tomatoes.

 

if i have to go interstate for a few days and can’t water it, will it die?  once established, treating them mean will keep them keen, so a couple of days of tough love will only do it good.

 

could i train my toddler to do all the work?  they grow pretty tall, so first train your toddler to use a stepladder before setting them to work on your tomato plant.

 

do i have to read a book or anything to get started?  the cherry tomato is about as highbrow as the vegetable gets on this list. read a book, any book, and get in the mindset.

 

what the hell will i do with all the surplus?  pile up the vine-ripened produce, store it in a zero oxygen chamber until late winter and then flog them off for $10 a punnet.

Read more: The best soil for a thriving garden is water-absorbing and well-fed

it’s tomato time: heirloom tomato seed pack + basil offer



6. radish- ‘cherry belle’ heirloom radish seeds

 

what makes radish so easy to grow?  vegetable gardening 101 starts with the radish. pop them in the ground from seed, water and 6 weeks later you’ll be sick of them. you could also harvest them as a micro herb, which is even easier and sounds nice and wanky.

 

how could i stuff it up?  by not trying.

 

what’s the smallest space it can grow in?  a little, shallow pot will suffice.

 

how long before harvest?  if the conditions are right, the stars aligned and it was meant to be, radishes can start popping out as early as 3 weeks down the track, no bullshit.

 

if i have to go interstate for a few days and can’t water it, will it die?  radish don’t really die, they become monstrous instead; shooting seed heads and going tough and fibrous. the boogieman has nothing on an unhappy radish.

 

could i train my toddler to do all the work?  i think it’s time to give your toddler a break and do some of the work yourself. and this is easily something you could do while your toddler tends to the mint and masters step-laddering.

 

do i have to read a book or anything to get started?  if you can recite the first three letters of the alphabet you can do whatever the hell you want with a radish. don’t bother with a book.

 

what the hell will i do with all the surplus?  as one of the first things you will harvest, radish often gets used as a prop highlighting the beauty that is home grown produce –  “here, try this radish, amazing!” it always impresses first time, but is vulnerable to the effect of diminishing return. as a fan of repetition you shouldn’t let this bother you.



7. squash- ‘golden summer crookneck’ heirloom seeds

  

what makes squash so easy to grow?  i’m certainly not smart enough to explain the evolution of the squash. ask charles.

 

how could i stuff it up?  planting too many seedlings and then becoming so attached to every single one of them that the idea of culling is absolutely impossible. it’s interesting, people don’t mind 2 million kangaroos getting lopped each year but then ask them to remove a vegetable seedling from their patch…

 

what’s the smallest space it can grow in?  a pretty big one actually

 

how long before harvest?  you’re looking at living rough for about 2 months before the good times kick in

 

if i have to go interstate for a few days and can’t water it, will it die?  there will be some collateral damage but nothing terminal. it’d be nice if you could enlist the help of your most attractive neighbour…for watering duties.

 

could i train my toddler to do all the work?  squash bushes do have some little spikes that for little people (toddlers included) would hurt a lot. forcing your toddler to do all the work, as he or she is relentlessly spiked, is not good training for the young one’s intelligence.

 

do i have to read a book or anything to get started?  read a book?! just youtube it.

 

what the hell will i do with all the surplus?  excess produce is your bartering tool so your neighbour waters while you’re away. and considering you’ll struggle to give away the last batches of squash anyhow, this is a significant win.

8. cucumber- ‘market more’ cucumber heirloom seeds

 

what makes cucumber so easy to grow?  fruit is incredibly resilient to pest and disease and grows vertically, so it perfectly tailored to hack, city gardeners.

 

how could i stuff it up?  it is quite fond of sun to begin with, so don’t overcrowd it with a lot of tall, gangly vegetables around it and let it climb on a trellis to keep it chasing the sun.

 

what’s the smallest space it can grow in?  the beauty of vertical growing is that we’re not starved of vertical space. look at a pot size at least 20cms in depth and diameter.

 

how long before harvest?  on our rooftop garden we harvested the first cucumber 4 weeks after planting the seedling. however considering it is still producing 3 months later, i wouldn’t hit the cocktails too early. pace yourself.

 

if i have to go interstate for a few days and can’t water it, will it die?  young ones will, but the established vines are pretty rigorous so no problems there.

 

could i train my toddler to do all the work?  funny you ask – your toddler has just mastered the art of step laddering and is now more than capable of looking after your cucumber.

 

do i have to read a book or anything to get started?  reading this will suffice.

 

what the hell will i do with all the surplus?  the cucumber is a valuable commodity at your local bar. become a regular i say.



9. spring onions- ‘japanese red beard’ spring onion heirloom seeds

   

what makes spring onion so easy to grow?  take a machete and chop them down to ground level and the buggers keep coming back! the bunch you bought from the market, roots still intact? plant them in the patch and they’ll keep growing! some fear artificial intelligence, i fear the spring onion.

 

how could i stuff it up?  not the neediest of plants but will appreciate a soil with plenty of compost and shit in it. don’t deny it this pleasure.

 

what’s the smallest space it can grow in?  pack them in nice and tight – they will get along with eachother spaced every 3-5cms without a complaint.

 

how long before harvest?  in a shitty soil out enjoying the spring weather, these guys won’t keep you waiting more than 6 weeks.

 

if i have to go interstate for a few days and can’t water it, will it die?  visualize the spring onions you bought from the markets with their roots inatct; pretty impressive system isn’t it? this tells us that once set up they are pretty tough. they’ll be fine, enjoy yourself.

 

could i train my toddler to do all the work?  proud to say that spring onions are toddler proof. though careful with the machete.

 

do i have to read a book or anything to get started?  once again, video is easier. we actually have a good one for this too…

 

what the hell will i do with all the surplus?  leave them in-ground, they store really well there.



10. herbs – perennial herb heirloom seed bundle

  

what makes herbs so easy to grow?  hardy and perennial, herbs should be the first thing you consider planting in the patch and in fact the design of your garden should revolve around them as they will be there for the long run. picking them helps them grow. that’s called a win-win.

 

how could i stuff it up?  being too blasé about how easy they are to grow. they still like stuff like sunlight, water and good quality soil, so make sure they’re set up right.

 10 best beginner plants

what’s the smallest space it can grow in?  put it this way – you grow a herb in a 20cm pot and it will produce for a few months before getting pot bound and looking tired. grow it in a 30cm pot and you prolong it to 6 months or longer. however grow it in-ground, give it a clearance of 30cms and you’re looking at life. you do the math.

 

how long before i harvest?  give it a few weeks to settled into its new home and you can start moderately picking. though don’t pick it bare and wonder why life has become harder for your herb friend.

 

if i have to go interstate for a few days and can’t water it, will it die?  hell no! mix business and pleasure and take a week if you have to.

 

could i train my toddler to do all the work?  yep, definitely one for the young ones. and if they mess this one up, demand answers.

 

do i have to read a book or anything to get started?  reading a book will only eat into the time you could be in the garden plotting away. on another note, check your neighbour’s garden before starting as there’s no need doubling up on the same plants, one will feed the both of you. maybe explain what you’re up to before wandering through their yard.

 

what the hell will i do with all the surplus?  infuse oils, dry them, give them away, start eating more..  get creative.

if you’re interested in starting a garden and don’t know where for your toddler to begin, we can always help out with our range of readymade veggie crates. just shine a giant tomato towards the night sky….we’ll find you

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Source: https://livingcorner.com.au
Category: Garden