Growing Your Own Vegetables

Growing your own vegetables provides your kitchen with the basic main ingredients to most recipes. These would be delicious, fresh, home grown ingredients.

Growing Your Own Vegetables

When it comes to creating a kitchen garden there are certain vegetables that you could call the staple of all kitchens. What I mean by staple is that most kitchens would use these items, or a combination of these items as ingredients in most dishes.

Choosing main kitchen ingredients is a good way to pull a kitchen garden design together, as for the most part these vegetables are easy to grow, easy to store, and easy to use.

It's good to look at growing your own vegetables using bumper crops, where you get a lot out of the garden for little effort.  As these crops would be plentiful and would need some sort of storage, such as freezing, making soups or preserving, you have simply transferred the work from the garden into the kitchen.

If you are growing your own vegetables to provide main ingredients you need to think about what sort of vegetables you seem to always buy, and these sorts of veg will tend to be a limited list that include things like onions, garlic and potatoes, and maybe a few other favorites you have.

The beauty of gardening this way is that as these types of vegetables store well, and as you tend to use them frequently, you will be getting the most out of your vegetable garden plot and wasting very little.

Here is a list of growing your own vegetables ingredient plants that would suit most kitchens.

Growing Your Own Onions

Onion Harvest DryingOnion Harvest Drying

Onions are probably the kitchen base of most recipes and fortunately they are easy to grow. You can buy onion sets which are small onion bulbs that you simply place root end down, up to their necks in soil.

The soil does not need too much work as onion roots do not go to deep into the ground, just a dressing of well-rotted manure or garden compost, followed by a mulch later in the year, would be perfect.

Onions are easy to store, simply pick when their stems are bending and place on a rack to dry, then they can either be strung or laid on an open shelf in a frost free well ventilated shed.

Although they will not store until your next set are ready the following year, you can also plant over wintering onions that will be picked much earlier.

If you use 3 onions per week, it is suggested that you planted 100 in the spring and another 100 in the Autumn - with losses this should see you through the year. If you are also planting bumper crops to turn into soups and preserves, add another 100 to your spring planting.

How to grow onions.

Onions Ready To HarvestOnions Ready To Harvest

Growing Your Own Garlic

Garlic Hanging To DryGarlic Hanging To Dry

Garlic require very similar soils to onions so prepare in much the same way, however they do like their bed to be free draining, so if water is an issue either use grit under each clove or dig in plenty of organic matter.

Garlic also requires a sunny position so consider this when planting.

The hardneck types are planted in Autumn as they do like to have a few months of cold weather to help bulb growth, and when they are ready they are racked and dried before plaiting and hanging in a cool, dry and frost free shed.

Fifty garlic bulbs should be enough for most kitchens, so as you plant them by cloves, and most bulbs contain 6 or 7 cloves, you’ll need to buy 7 or 8 bulbs to plant.

How to grow garlic.

Growing Your Own Vegetables, Potatoes

Potato HarvestPotato Harvest

What kitchen can go without potato? Potatoes tend to be planted at Easter, not so much because of the weather, it just became a traditional time for workers to get their spuds in as they were not working over the Easter holiday.

Buy seed potatoes in January and start then chitting towards the end of the month. Chitting is another name for sprouting.

There are three types of potato, first early, second early and main crop, but this is not complicated as it only refers to the length of time they are in the ground. First earlies will be ready first and tend to be smaller, main crop are last and largest. We choose first earlies for summer salad potatoes and main crop large storage potatoes.

The only thing you’ll need to remember about potatoes is that they are greedy, so plenty of manure or compost. We line trenches with seaweed; it’s a great fertilizer and has the added benefit of keeping slugs away.

Dig up potatoes on a warm and sunny day and allow them to dry before storing in paper sacks.

How to grow potatoes.

Growing Your Own Herbs

Basil LeavesBasil In The Garden

Many herbs are a permanent crop that need a sunny location, preferably near the kitchen for convenience.

They tend to be used all year round and are, other than soft leaf herbs, usually always available.

A great way to store herbs would be to chop them into ice cube trays, top with water and freeze, then simply drop an ice cube with your chosen herb into whatever you are making. They can also be dried, and soft leaf herbs such as basil and coriander can be made into a pesto. Here are some good planting a vegetable ideas for herbs.

Kitchen garden growing can be done in many ways, whether you are looking at garden vegetables for dry or frozen storage, or ideas for having all year round harvesting, you could even create a home vegetable garden for making jams, chutneys and preserves.