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    Categories: Fruit & Vegetable Gardening

Small garden vegetables

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The last house I lived in, had an incredibly small garden (11 ft x 9 ft). Over the 8 years in Rose Cottage, I made the most of the limited space by selecting and training my plants vertically, rather than horizontally. Luckily it was a real sun-trap and I used plenty of window boxes, hanging baskets and trellises to maximise the growing area.

Now, I have a good sized garden but I still value every square inch, especially when it comes to growing veg. Here are some vegetable selections that you might want to try if you want to use space in your garden sparingly.

Varieties to try

Dwarf Bean Golden Teepee

Attractive, golden-yellow pencil pods of excellent flavour contrast with the dark green leaves. The stringless pods are held high for ease of picking, so are less prone to disease and rotting from soil splash.

Tomato Tasty Tumbler

At last – a basket tomato that tastes as good as it looks! This compact variety is ideal for growing bumper crops in the smallest of spaces, having been specially bred for growing in hanging baskets and patio containers – you can even grow it in a window box! Why not plant Tomato ‘Tasty Tumbler’ outside your kitchen window for a convenient supply of delicious cherry tomatoes? Height and spread: 30cm (12”).

Dwarf Runner Bean Hestia

A superb variety with all the best characteristics of modern runner beans, but on dwarf plants. Runner Bean Hestia is early to crop, often before standard types, with a good yield of tasty, long, straight, stringless pods, held above the soil to avoid disease. Dwarf Runner Bean Hestia is ideal for small gardens, large containers and borders where its bi-coloured flowers of red and white make an attractive addition. Suitable For Freezing.

Climbing French Bean – Cobra

Massive crops of mid green, smooth, round, stringless pods about 18cm (7in) long. Climbing Bean Cobra is a highly attractive mauve flowered variety, a delight in the border, and with an exceptional flavour. Huge yields of these flavoursome beans over a long cropping season. Seeds are in the RHS Vegetable Collection.

Mangetout

A tall growing variety with red leaf nodes and lovely mauve flowers followed by deliciously sweet pale golden-yellow, crisp pods. Best picked regularly before the peas swell in the pods, ideal steamed whole or added to stir fries. Mangetout Golden Sweet grows to 210cm (7ft) so needs support.

Other ideas: Hanging basket veg

You can also use your wall space for more vegetables. Strawberries or tumbler tomatoes can be grown in amongst lobelia, black-eyed Susan or bacopa for a flora, but productive display that won’t compromise on appearance.

James Middleton :An obsessive gardener since 1982. Day-time job - web designer and developer and University lecturer.

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