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Great “Easy Lucrative Garden Crops” Hunt: What costly foods can you grow with ease?

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  • 1jim
    1jim Posts: 2,663 Forumite
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    We grow quite a bit having turned the borders into veg borders, grow tomatoes, corgettes, turnip, radishes, peas, runner beans, dwarf french beans, various salad leafs and lettuice, carrots, kale, (last year tried sweetcorn and parsnip with no luck), Im sure I have missed somthing out but they do taste so much better than shop bought

    I have just been given a couple of small planters, 2 of them are about 50cm long, a foot deep and a foot wide, was thinging about putting a corgette plant into one of these--do you thing it will be big enough?
  • Primrose
    Primrose Posts: 10,620 Forumite
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    1jim - don't see why not. They shade out quite a bit area around themselves because of their large leaves so if they have a planter to themselves they wouldn't shade out other veggies in your borders. As they're heavy feeders, I'd throw a few chicken manure pellets or some other fertiliser into the container to give them a helping hand, and possibly some water retention crystals to help keep the compost moist as planters do dry out very quickly.
  • sonas_baby
    sonas_baby Posts: 189 Forumite
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    I have grown corgettes for years in pots so long as they don't dry out you're fine. If you don't have a lot of time for watering mix in some moisture retaining gel with your compost. I also brought a few of my pepper plants in last autumn and they are still producing, these were sown saved seeds so cost me nothing. Made a cold frame last autumn from window frames I got on a free recycle site and going to try egg plants this year. You can't beat growing your own for taste.
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  • SkydiveMacca
    SkydiveMacca Posts: 12 Forumite
    edited 16 April 2009 at 2:46PM
    Hello all again,

    I've asked the editorial chaps and chapesses to give their view as I thought this might be useful to all. Here's their reply :-)


    These are Garden News and Garden Answers top 5 crops to grow for best results in a small space.

    Carrots - easy to grow in pots of multipurpose compost and by growing your own you can keep them pesticide-free.

    Tomatoes – cheap as chips to grow from seed, cherry tomatoes can be easily grown in pots and baskets. Water and feed through summer and you’ll get a lot back in return.

    French beans – will crop very quickly if sown outside in early May and because they grow upwards they don’t take up a lot of soil either! Keep picking and you’ll get more for your money.

    Spring onions – so easy to grow from seed, spring onions take up hardly any space so you can squeeze a row into a bed or border. They taste great too.

    Salad leaves – buy one packet of seeds of any salad leaf and you can sow a summers worth of salad for the price of one bag of leaves bought from the supermarket.
  • Prudent
    Prudent Posts: 11,448 Forumite
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    Thanks so much for all this info skydivemacca. I was wondering about trying carrots and spring onions - my little collection of bags and pots is certainly expanding! Are there any varieties of carrots that do well in pots? I have some border space left for the spring onions.
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  • B-girl_2
    B-girl_2 Posts: 8 Forumite
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    Thanks to everyone for all the posts.

    I usually do flowers and even though they are not going to save you money on the food bill. You can grow your own sweetpeas, daffodils (and so many more!) and have fragrant cut flowers for free at no cost to the environment and very little cost to yourself.

    After reading all of these posts I'm going out this weekend to get some tomato plants and putting them in a container on my deck. The fragrance of tomato leaves on your hands is one of life's true joys.
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  • Hi Prudent,

    Any ‘stump rooted’ varieties can be grown in pots – these are carrots that don’t have really long spindly bits at the bottom.

    The following are all reliable and pretty easy to grow.

    ‘Nantes 2’
    ‘Autumn King 2’
    ‘Flyaway F1’

    Pots ideally need to be at least 30cm (12in) deep if you want good sized carrots.
  • kippers
    kippers Posts: 2,055 Forumite
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    mandylew wrote: »
    to grow coriander like you buy in the shops you need to sow it thickly a bit like growing cress, however with a pack of 150 seeds costing ave £1.99 its not economical to grow it this way. if you plant out/thin etc like the packets tell you you will get a good crop of seed but not leaf. . However at the asian supermarket (or even teso in the ethnic foods section) you can get a huge bag of coriander seed for 43p you can afford to sow a pot thickly every few days which will be ready to cut in about 4 weeks.

    I always wondered why mine went to seed so quick...so i just don't need to thin them?
  • Primrose
    Primrose Posts: 10,620 Forumite
    Name Dropper First Post First Anniversary I've been Money Tipped!
    B-girl, I had to laugh at your post about the fragrance of tomato leaves on your hands! My first ever summer vacation job was working in acres of tomato greenhouses on a smallholding. My sole task for 6 weeks was nipping out the sideshoots of tomatoes. . By the end of six weeks even item of clothing I owned was permanently stained green-yellow, and myskin looked as if I was suffering from yellow jaundice. I was 16 at the time and those six weeks certainly taught me that money didn't grow on trees! .Couldn't face eating a tomato for months!:rotfl:And I naively turned up on my first day wearing a smart dress because I had visions of doing the "Victorian Lady" bit walking down the aisles with a small watering can!
  • thebigbosh
    thebigbosh Posts: 298 Forumite
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    Honeyberries are the latest miracle berry I think.
    Blueberries were the year before goji's.

    It will be interesting to see what next years will be.

    How about açai? I keep seeing it advertised in my email junk box. For those in the UK that haven't tried it, açai is eaten regularly over here in brazil as a kind of frozen desert, damn tasty, meant to give you a little energy. Also thrown into smoothies and juices. Purple, stains everything. Makes a great milkshake. But it's got nothing to do with weight loss as claimed.

    Also- comes from up north in Brazil and is quite rare - never heard of it being grown outside of this climate. And up there they eat it savoury with meat, rice & beans....
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