I have often wondered why kitchen gardens are so beguiling. Are we, beneath our sophisticated exterior, still primeval beings always searching for food, making the sight of a garden full of herbs, vegetables, and fruit so comforting? For me though, it is the serenity that is engendered by the orderliness of the well managed kitchen garden that is so attractive. Whatever the appeal of the kitchen garden is, can many people truthfully say they do not savour the sight of a well stocked and well planned kitchen garden.
To design and prepare a kitchen garden to grow just salad vegetables on their own is worthy of the effort . Salad vegetables grow rapidly, giving instant satisfaction as well as being undemanding, only requiring watering and the occasional weeding. They can even be protected from diseases and pests with little or no difficulty.
A tender group, are the fruiting vegetable group. They are happiest growing under cover, in a greenhouse or a conservatory, however they are they are happy outdoors if given a sunny, warm, sheltered spot.
The member of this group which is the most commonly grown is the tomato. The tomato grown at home has so much flavour when compared to the bland tasting shop bought tomatoes that growing them becomes addictive and it is difficult to go back to buying them from the supermarket.
These are some very attractive vegetables. Ranging from the spiky artichokes and cardoons, which are architectural and add height to the very decorous fennel, celery and asparagus with their frilled and feathery leaves. By adding rhubarb, with its immense girth, you add the dramatic and have very nice collection of shooting vegetables.
Nutritionists place leafy vegetables at the top of their super foods list, and rightly so. These vegetables are packed full of minerals and vitamins as well as having that vital ingredient, folic acid. These vegetables are also very decorative placing high on the list of must-haves for the kitchen gardener.
This gargantuan group of vegetables has many differing plants that come in all shapes and sizes. The sturdy, the stubby, the tight, round cabbages to the frilly, loose, upright chards and kales. They also come in a range of quite vivid colours.