The Beginner's Kitchen Garden Mini Series: Essential Salads for the Kitchen Garden
For the fourth episode in the miniseries, Sarah talks listeners through her favourite ever salads to grow all year round in your outdoor space. Discover the hardy varieties and unbeatable productivity that Sarah simply couldn’t live without.
in this episode, discover
- The best varieties for salad all year round
- Top tips for growing your own for the very first time
Please note, serious care should be taken when consuming edible flowers. To ensure that it is safe to do so, seek advice from a gardener, dietitian, or healthcare professional who can provide additional information.
Although many people tend to think that salads signify the summer, Sarah explains that there is a wealth of varieties that are simply sensational all year round.
April to August
Between August and April, Sarah begins to look at her four favourite varieties for sowing and growing.
- Lettuce 'Merveille de Quatre Saisons' – also known as ‘marvel of four seasons’ can grow happily in every season of the year. In a beautiful bronze colour, it has a wonderful open structure and a soft leaf with a crunchy stem.
- Salad Rocket 'Serrata' – Bred from the original rocket variety, salad rocket is peppery and works well alongside subtle lettuce. Really hardy and excellent for growing through the winter, between August and April sow twice. Over this period there will be no flea beetle either, which means healthy crops for much longer.
- Parsley 'Gigante di Napoli' – completely hardy, and great for added to salads or dressings.
- Florence Fennel 'Romanesco' – great for adding oomph, a true classic in Italian markets. Again, this prefers the colder months. Sow in July/August to harvest through the autumn. Harvest again in September/October if you have a cold frame or greenhouse. It will bolt not bulb if you plant it in the hot months.
August to April
- Lettuce 'Reine de Glaces' – Another lettuce that makes a fantastic choice. Living up to its name, ‘Queen of ice’, this variety is pretty hardy. Sow and grow all year round, but for best results, Sarah chooses to sow in April. A second sowing in June until the end of August is also a wise idea.
- Wild Rocket – Instead of salad rocket that comes from Asia, wild rocket is a Mediterranean wild plant that traditionally comes from Turkey or Greece. Incredibly heat tolerant, this variety is a short-lived perennial and should be cut and cut again for it to come back in abundance. Sow in March or April for salad throughout the summer months. Don’t forget to cut back regularly for rocket in abundance.
- French Tarragon – Sarah’s ultimate favourite herb for adding to salads and homecooked meals. Wonderful in dressings for chopped roughly and added to salad. It also likes poor soil, so works well for novice gardeners.
- Dahlia petals – Dahlia petals are great for adding colour and flavour. This is a great way to bring your salad to life.