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All homegrown vegetables are nutritious. The fact that you can eat them fresh, just after they have been harvested, means that they will be at...

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All homegrown vegetables are nutritious. The fact that you can eat them fresh, just after they have been harvested, means that they will be at the peak of both flavour and nutrient value. But among the many food plants you...

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Carrots can be grown quite densely compared to a lot of other crops. They’re not only good for fresh eating, but they store particularly well...

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Carrots can be grown quite densely compared to a lot of other crops. They’re not only good for fresh eating, but they store particularly well for use in the fall and winter — and beyond in some cases. With a...

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Squash (Curcurbita sp.) Of all the vegetable varieties, squashes are by far the most diverse in shape, size, and overall appearance. The sheer complexity of this vegetable group invites growers on a life-long adventure. There are many hundreds of different named varieties of squash (perhaps more types in cultivation than any other group of vegetable), each with its own fascinating history, but there are countless more yet to be developed, as the plants are so easy to breed and prone to cross-pollination.

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Squash (Curcurbita sp.) Of all the vegetable varieties, squashes are by far the most diverse in shape, size, and overall appearance. The sheer complexity of this vegetable group invites growers on a life-long adventure. There are many hundreds of different named varieties of squash (perhaps more types in cultivation than any other group of vegetable), each with its own fascinating history, but there are countless more yet to be developed, as the plants are so easy to breed and prone to cross-pollination.

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About Cucumbers Cucumbers originated in India where they have been in cultivation for at least 3,000 years. The English word “cucumber” is a derivation of...

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About Cucumbers Cucumbers originated in India where they have been in cultivation for at least 3,000 years. The English word “cucumber” is a derivation of the Indian word kachumbar, which is still used today to describe an Indian salad made...

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About Amaranth: All Amaranths are annuals or short lived perennials with oval, pointed leaves of various colours, which are followed by minute flowers borne on...

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About Amaranth: All Amaranths are annuals or short lived perennials with oval, pointed leaves of various colours, which are followed by minute flowers borne on (sometimes drooping), tassel-like spikes that last until the end of summer. These then give way...

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Parsnip (Pastinaca sativa) As a member of the family Apiaciae, the parsnip counts among its close cousins the carrot, parsley, dill, fennel, cilantro, and celery....

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Parsnip (Pastinaca sativa) As a member of the family Apiaciae, the parsnip counts among its close cousins the carrot, parsley, dill, fennel, cilantro, and celery. All of these bear tall umbels of flowers, but like the carrot, parsnip is biennial,...

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Leeks (Allium ampeloprasum, var. porrum, syn. A. porrum) This member of the Allium family is thought to have been in cultivation since the 2nd century...

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Leeks (Allium ampeloprasum, var. porrum, syn. A. porrum) This member of the Allium family is thought to have been in cultivation since the 2nd century BC, from ancient Egypt to Mesopotamia. The Romans believed that eating leeks imparted a sonorous...

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Cress (Lepidium sativum) & Watercress (Nasturtium officinale) Cress (sometimes called garden cress, garden pepper cress, pepperwort, or pepper grass) is a leafy annual herb from...

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Cress (Lepidium sativum) & Watercress (Nasturtium officinale) Cress (sometimes called garden cress, garden pepper cress, pepperwort, or pepper grass) is a leafy annual herb from the Brassica family. It is harvested when immature, around one to two weeks after germination,...

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About Cauliflower (Brassica oleracea Botrytis group) Modern cauliflower has been grown since the 15th century, and it was grown almost exclusively in Italy until the...

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About Cauliflower (Brassica oleracea Botrytis group) Modern cauliflower has been grown since the 15th century, and it was grown almost exclusively in Italy until the 16th century when it gradually migrated to France and then to American gardens 100 years...

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Celery (Apium graveolens var. dulce) & Celeriac (A. graveolens var. rapaceum) The Latin names for the different types of celery are revealing. In both cases,...

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Celery (Apium graveolens var. dulce) & Celeriac (A. graveolens var. rapaceum) The Latin names for the different types of celery are revealing. In both cases, graveolens means “strong smelling” or “heavily scented.” Dulce implies sweetness, while rapaceum means “turnip-like.” Few...

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Asparagus (Asparagus officinalis) Asparagus has very few close botanical relatives in its own family, Asparagaceae. The name “asparagus” simply comes from the Latin botanical title,...

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Asparagus (Asparagus officinalis) Asparagus has very few close botanical relatives in its own family, Asparagaceae. The name “asparagus” simply comes from the Latin botanical title, with its roots in Greek and the original Persian, asparag, meaning “shoots.” The asparagus we...

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About Arugula Arugula is a low-growing member of the Brassica family that forms rosettes that resemble a cross between lettuce and dandelions. Its leaves have...

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About Arugula Arugula is a low-growing member of the Brassica family that forms rosettes that resemble a cross between lettuce and dandelions. Its leaves have deep, round indentations reminiscent of oak leaves. These, as well as the flowers and seed...

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Artichokes are heat-loving plants of the large family, Asteraceae. The genus Cynara includes eight other wild, thistle-like plants, including C. humilis, which was grown as...

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Artichokes are heat-loving plants of the large family, Asteraceae. The genus Cynara includes eight other wild, thistle-like plants, including C. humilis, which was grown as a food crop in North Africa. Some people grow these plants for their splendid purple...

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Every fall people ask us how to harvest quinoa. These tall plants produce masses of seeds, each seed resulting from the pollination of a single...

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Every fall people ask us how to harvest quinoa. These tall plants produce masses of seeds, each seed resulting from the pollination of a single flower in their beautiful inflorescences (flower clusters). When the seeds are fully ripe and ready...

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About Melons: Watermelon (Citrullus lanatus) & Muskmelon (Cucumis melo) One of the basic facts about melons is that they can be challenging to grow well...

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About Melons: Watermelon (Citrullus lanatus) & Muskmelon (Cucumis melo) One of the basic facts about melons is that they can be challenging to grow well here in south coastal BC. But with a bit of added heat they can be...

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Beets, like many root vegetables are biennials, which, if not harvested, will bloom in the second year of growth. One of the interesting facts about...

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Beets, like many root vegetables are biennials, which, if not harvested, will bloom in the second year of growth. One of the interesting facts about beets is they are closely related to Swiss chard, which can easily be seen by...

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Baby leaf lettuces are bred for their appeal at an immature stage. As baby greens they have traits that are particularly attractive for salad mixes....

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Baby leaf lettuces are bred for their appeal at an immature stage. As baby greens they have traits that are particularly attractive for salad mixes. The leaves are succulent and tasty, with good texture, and they come in a variety...

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Inspired by Chinese cuisine? Your garden can be too! Many of the greens we associate with Asia are hardy and thrive in cool spring weather....

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Inspired by Chinese cuisine? Your garden can be too! Many of the greens we associate with Asia are hardy and thrive in cool spring weather. These crops are very easy to grow, and early maturing. Try planting some in short...

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Our seed potatoes are grown on this farm in the Pemberton Valley. What’s so special about seed potatoes from West Coast Seeds? Well, for a...

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Our seed potatoes are grown on this farm in the Pemberton Valley. What’s so special about seed potatoes from West Coast Seeds? Well, for a start, they are certified organic. That means that the farm where they are grown is...

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Collards (Brassica oleracea Acephala group) Kale (Brassica oleracea Acephala group) Russian or Napa Kale (Brassica rapus ssp. pabularia syn. B. napus) Learn about kale and...

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Collards (Brassica oleracea Acephala group) Kale (Brassica oleracea Acephala group) Russian or Napa Kale (Brassica rapus ssp. pabularia syn. B. napus) Learn about kale and collards here. As the name suggests, Brassicas in the Acephala group do not form central...

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Like its close cousins in the endive group, all about radicchio varieties are members of the Chicory family. Radicchio has been in cultivation since the...

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Like its close cousins in the endive group, all about radicchio varieties are members of the Chicory family. Radicchio has been in cultivation since the fifteenth century in Veneto, a region in the northeast of Italy. Most radicchio varieties are...

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