What to plant if you want food quickly
Those leafy vegetables and herbs Paul West mentioned above? Not only can they be grown in pots to suit a small space, but if you put them in the ground right now, they’ll be ready to begin harvesting in four to six weeks! ‘When you do start harvesting, be sure to harvest the outermost leaves first, and never take more than one-third of the plant mass,’ he says.
Of course, you don’t need to be a literal expert to grow your own produce at home, as shown by TDF’s very own gardening enthusiast (aka our partnerships manager) Alice Ziebell! Alice spends every weekend tending to her crop of plants alongside her landscape architect husband, Marlon Ziebell. (Once your vegetable garden is underway, be sure to try out some of this pair’s delightful recipes!)
Alice says right now is the perfect time to plant your winter crop while the weather (and soil) remains warm. ‘It will give them a nice head start so that come the cooler weather you’ll have a thriving winter veggie garden. We’ve just put cabbages, broccoli, bok choy, carrots and beetroot in the ground.’
If you’re looking for something that you can start picking ASAP and is easy to grow, Alice says you can’t go past radish seeds. ‘Pop them straight in the ground and you’ll be picking and eating them in just a few weeks! (Don’t forget, radish tops are also delicious and can be used for making pesto, so you really can eat the whole thing!)’
What to plant now, for down the track results…
Garlic has to be one of the most used ingredients by any home chef, and if you’ve got a head on hand already, you can literally separate this into cloves, place them 2cm deep in soil, and start the growing process today! They should be ready in six to nine months. That being said, try to buy organic, Australian garlic where you can for the best results.
Fruit trees are a much longer investment, but one that’s incredibly rewarding. These are generally fine to plant in winter, but keep in mind they won’t yield fruit for a few years! Ben Shaw has had great success with plums, pears, apricots, tamarillos and limes. Be sure to research what fruit trees are most suited to your garden’s climate before getting started.