Though gardens often look a bit sad and neglected over the winter months, there are a few super-hardy plants that will keep going over the colder months to give you garden some va-va voom. It’s not a bad time of year to start a vegetable patch either, providing you have the discipline to get out there are tend the plants when it gets cold.
Perpetual spinach is a brilliant crop. This cut-and-come again plant is beautifully tasty, and will add a flash of brilliant green to your garden. Planted in autumn, it yields lovely peppery young leaves, and it’ll continue far into the summer. Be sure to remove the flowers to prevent it running to seed, and be sure to protect from frosts.
Beans and Peas
Quick and easy-to-grow broadbeans are great in salads. Peas are an easy crop to grow. too The variety dramatically named ‘Meteor’ is very hardy and will be ready for picking at the beginning of spring.
Keeping your garden looking green over the winter, perennial shrubs will also give you some beautiful spring flowers to look forward to.
Dwarf shrubs, like conifers, are full of impact, and ideal for the winter garden – pop outdoor lights and decorations on them in the run-up to Christmas. These fast-growing plants will require pruning.
Full of Flavour: Onions, Shallots and Garlic
Onions are one of the most useful vegetables, and are surprisingly easy to grow.
The Echalote Grise is a lovely shallot that is great for autumn planting. It’s got a great intense and concentrated flavour.
There are so many varieties of garlic to choose from when planting in autumn. Like onions, they have a long growing season and won't be ready to eat till next summer. Chesnok red is a lovely garlic variety, with an unusual texture and flavour.
Certain spring onion varieties are surprisingly hardy. They pack a big flavour punch in salads. Spring onions are quicker to grow than most onion varieties and they’ll be ready for –you guessed it - spring.
So don’t neglect your garden this winter. Make it an extension to your pantry and a place to enjoy even when the weather is less than optimum.
image credits: stephanie bartron, stokeyouth1, romajoy41, desegura,