Leafy Vegetables for Your 2021 Garden!
We all know why we should eat our leafy vegetables… because they’re good for us! But more than just being healthy, different kinds of lettuce can actually bring different flavour notes to our salads, sandwiches, wraps, whatever’s on the menu. It’s also important that these ingredients be fresh, and there’s nothing fresher than picking leafy vegetables in your garden and bringing them straight to your kitchen.
Check out our other recent blog post all about Cold Tolerant Vegetables!
But what kind of lettuce and other leafy veggies should you grow? Here are some of our favourites.
5 Lovable Leafy Vegetables!
This is a lettuce that lives up to its name. This type of lettuce – especially its heart – is very tender. And it kind of resembles a rose, with open leaves forming the head. Butter lettuce has a very mild flavour, meaning that you can add it to a dish easily, and it won’t overpower the palate. It actually contains lactucarium, which can make you sleepy.
Kale keeps showing up in all sorts of places, and with good reason – it’s really, really good for you. This veggie has fiber, antioxidants, vitamins and other nutrients. It’s very versatile. You can chop it up and add it to a salad; cook it and add it to soups, stews, pasta dishes and more; or you can even make chips out of it! More mature kale has a very earthy taste, while younger kale is more mild. If you are going to eat it raw – particularly mature kale – consider removing the centre stem, as that has a very concentrated flavour and is very tough.
Red or Purple Cabbage
Sometimes salads can look a little boring, when the lettuce is always green. That’s why red or purple cabbage is a great addition. Not only does it add a nice punch of colour, but this veggie is great to help you with your digestive health. It bring a bit of a pepper flavour to your food. You can also cook with it; sauteing it to stand on its own, pickling it, adding it to a stir fry, etc. It’s not a very commonly used vegetable, like some of the others on this list, which means there’s lots of opportunity to experiment and create your own signature dish – the possibilities are practically endless.
There’s just something about a Caesar salad made with Romaine lettuce. It’s practically a given, but with good reason – the leaves offer a satisfying crunch with just a hint of bitterness that matches well with the tang of the dressing, and the dark green of the lettuce contrasts nicely with the bright white of the cheese. Commercially sold Romaine lettuce is sometimes recalled because of concerns about things like E. coli. which is just gives a stronger case as to why you should grow your own! Don’t worry about putting off your cravings for this particular lettuce.
You can add spinach to a lot of different dishes, and it brings a nutritional punch with it. Baby spinach is tender and has a mild, earthy flavour; the flavour gets stronger the longer spinach is left to grow. Spinach wilts dramatically when you cook it, so it’s easy to add to lots of dishes. It’s also great raw in salads, on wraps, on burgers – basically anywhere you want to add a little bit of ‘healthy’ to what you’re eating. The stems on spinach get tougher the longer it’s left to grow, so consider removing these if you’re eating older spinach raw.
Leafy Vegetables Love BigYellowBag Black Garden Soil!
Of course, if you want to grow any of these leafy veggies in your garden so you can get the best health benefits of fresh produce at the table, we recommend you start by giving your plants the healthiest start possible with BigYellowBag Black Garden Soil. Our soil offers a mixture of black loam, peat loam, compost and manure. Loam is a soil type comprised of sand, silt and clay in just the right ratios to allow for drainage while also maintaining moisture. It’s a must for the plants in your garden. Our soil is packed with essential nutrients and organic matter. which plants need to grow healthy and strong.