This week the new Suttons Seeds catalogue arrived – the first of what I expect to be many new seed catalogues arriving over the coming weeks. As the garden season largely starts coming to an end for most of us, and few varieties are still to be sown, the catalogues are our first opportunity to start planning for the next season.
As I suspect is the case with most of us, there are the usual ‘tried and tested’ favourites we grow every year, but I also like to try a few new things too – not just different varieties, but new types of fruits or vegetables too. This is especially the case when something ‘unusual’ comes along – if nothing else, they prove to be a talking point among plotholders on the site (this year, for example, everyone has been especially interested to follow my progress growing Achocha).
So, having flicked through the Suttons catalogue here’s a few things I’ll be trying next year;
Toona sinensis – or as Suttons call it, the ‘Beef and Onion Plant‘. This is a new addition to the James Wong collection for 2019. I’m not a great fan of the James Wong habit of giving ‘new’ names to things, especially when the packet doesn’t give the botanical names (the listing on Suttons does give it here, but I’ve had a few that, in the past, haven’t). With that said, even as an architectural plant, this is something I’d like to try next year. Otherwise known as Chinese Mahogany, I can find very little about it’s edible qualities – but the leaves supposedly carry the same flavour as a packet of beef and onion crisps.
A hardy perennial, it will need frost protection for the first 2 years before becoming established.
In any event, 50 seeds for £2.99 make it worth a try in my book.
Lettuce ‘OutREDgeous‘ – the first lettuce to be grown and harvested on the International Space Station (back in 2014). You could be forgiven for thinking this was a brand new variety, but I’ve discovered that it’s actually been cultivated for over 20 years already. With that said, I’d never heard of it before so the marketing ‘spin’ has at least brought it to my attention. Supposedly grows well in low light, has a crunchy texture and beautiful red leaves – as someone that eats salads at least twice a day, this fits the bill in terms of adding colour and crunch to a meal. I plan to try this in a few different positions to see how well it performs. 200 seeds for £2.99 – however a packet is included for free with all seed orders over £10 until Christmas eve.
Cauliflower F1 Multi-head – I’ll be growing the variety Igloo again next year after this years surprise result, but this ‘cut and come again’ variety appeals – especially as someone that uses quite a lot of cauliflower. I suspect the ‘cut and come again’ terminology is possibly a little misleading, but having multiple heads from a single plant is certainly something I could use.
So those are my initial picks for the plot in 2019. I’m sure many more new varieties will be added as I make my way through all the catalogues in the coming months.
Plant images courtesy of Suttons Seeds