Be Brave – Try Something New

The comfort of returning to something you know you love is a deeply entrenched human trait. Just ask little kids – they’ll pick a favorite bedtime story over a new one every time, even if you’ve read it 65 times already. And many vegetable gardeners have, over the years, settled on favorites that they know from experience will do well in their garden space and taste terrific.

But I’d like to encourage you to try a few new things this year.  Plant breeders have been hard at work developing new cultivars, often with the goal of overcoming some less than ideal trait that is common in established varieties. So what you get is familiar, but better.

Most of you know that my gardening focus is on edible plants that do well in containers. In recent years, I’ve noticed a sea change in the gardening world: almost all the growers are developing varieties specifically for containers — and darn proud of it.

Cruising around the internet recently, I found several intriguing new items that are perfect for containers.  Most are available as seeds from well-known seed companies, all of which are findable through your usual search engines; I’ve suggested some here, for your convenience, but I certainly don’t claim it’s a complete list.

And while it may be too late where you live to start from seeds, the chances are good that your local garden center has seedlings of these new plants. So make some notes here, take your list to your favorite nursery, and have fun exploring.

PATIO CHOICE cherry tomato.  Great news for container gardeners: This one has compact size, determinate growth habit, high yields of brilliant yellow 1-inch tomatoes, and significant disease resistance. No wonder it was an All-America Selections Winner for 2017. Seeds available from Park, Totally Tomato, Jung Garden & Flower, Seeds ‘n Such.

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