As perennial vegetables are often quite easy to grow and require very little ongoing work, it is surprising we don’t grow (and eat) more of them. Go beyond asparagus and check out these 18 perennial vegetables to add new flavors and textures to your table, plus some new and interesting plants to your garden!
Although many people think of annual veggies such as peppers, tomatoes, and lettuce when preparing to grow a garden, there are actually a number of delicious vegetables that will come back and grace your garden every year – without you having to do the work of planting them all over again!
As you usually don’t have to till or disturb the soil once these plants are established, they help keep your soil structure intact, decrease erosion, and create their own mulch and topsoil from the foliage they drop at the end of the season.
Whether you’re growing a fall garden, or planning ahead for what to grow next spring, here are some interesting and delicious perennial vegetables to add to your lineup:
1. Asparagus (Of Course!)
One of the best-loved perennial veggies out there, asparagus (Asparagus officinalis) is treasured around the world for its delicious, delicate stalks. Growing your own asparagus is incredibly rewarding, but keep in mind that it will take a few years for it to establish well enough to give you a good yield.
Renowned in French cooking, sorrel is a lemony-flavored vegetable that’s as good raw as it is cooked in soups and sauces….
3. Stinging Nettle
Many people would cringe at the mere thought of putting a stinging, prickly plant anywhere near their mouths, but stinging nettle (Urtica dioica) loses its bite as soon as it’s cooked, and it would be a shame to discount this amazing plant because it’s a bit “difficult”. They’re packed with vitamin A, calcium, and iron, and are absolutely delicious.
4. Sylvetta Arugula
Known as wild arugula, or wild rocket, this perennial heirloom (Diplotaxis tenuifolia) was originally cultivated in Italy, but has found its way to gardens around the world. Sylvetta has a sharper, more fiery bite than regular arugula, and its pointed green leaves are welcome additions to salads and egg dishes….
5. Miner’s Lettuce
You may not know this innocuous little plant, but miner’s lettuce (Claytonia perfoliata), also known as Indian lettuce or winter purslane, is a tasty salad green that more people should familiarize themselves with….
It’s hardy to zone 4,… and can be
grown in areas that are partially shady….
Considering that this plant grows on lawns and abandoned spaces across the globe, you’re undoubtedly familiar with it already….
What many don’t realize is just how delicious, and nutritious, this humble little plant can be. The greens are wonderful when wilted and added to pasta dishes, and can be eaten as a salad green as well….