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Snippet of The Beginner's Garden: Dependable Varieties For Beginners

Last Played: March 03, 2021
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Starting a vegetable garden can be overwhelming, so learn about the best varieties of vegetables to begin your quarantine gardening experience with Jill McSheehy in this episode from The Beginner's Garden.
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well, But if you are wanting to start out with something a little bit simpler to dip your toe into the water of gardening and you want a little bit of a simpler variety that you can depend on for your tomatoes this year, I'm gonna give you a couple of alternatives. The first one I would recommend is a cherry tomato variety. Cherry tomatoes are small tomatoes, and they produce a lot. A lot of people love snacking on them, putting them in salads. They're extremely rewarding because they do produce and they come to rightness really fast. And even if they do have problems with diseases, the ones that I have found there are a lot easier to manage. So I would recommend any type of cherry tomato variety. Last year I grew mats Wild Cherry, which I really liked it. It was a really prolific plant, but there are also lots of different varieties. Any kind of cherry tomato is gonna be a good variety for a beginner to start with, and from the ones that I have grown, they don't require as complicated of a staking methods. So that's another pro to choosing a cherry tomato variety. If you want to go a little bit bigger, I would recommend a new variety that I tried last year. It's called Juliet now. Juliette is a hybrid variety. I tend to like to plant heirloom, open pollinated plants, but I do make a few exceptions, and this was one that I made. It was actually the scenes were sent to me by a gentleman who listens to this podcast. And I fell in love with a variety like he knew that I would because it was very easy to grow very dependable, a little bit bigger than cherry tomatoes. I would say it's probably more of, I don't know, maybe even bigger than a great size, but definitely not a huge tomato. But they were, ah, lot more vigorous than I expected. And I would say that was a pretty easy one. Now, understand, too, that I do live in the southeastern United States. And so the heat and the different weather patterns they really do affect how tomatoes grow. So please understand. My experience may not be yours, but from people that I have talked to that have grown this variety, they have found it to be dependable. The next one I want to recommend is a Roma tomato. Romas are my go to tomatoes because I use almost all of my tomatoes for for preserving for sauce and salsa and stuff like that. Roma is one of those that will only grow to be three or 4 ft tall. It does require a little bit of staking, but not nearest Muchas some of your vining and sprawling indeterminant varieties. So that's another plus of growing aroma that you don't have to create this elaborate staking structure with Roma tomatoes. And I found that they are pretty easy now. I have had other people that have said that they have struggled with Roma's with blossom end rot and things like that. And I've and I've struggled with blossom end rot to some degree with my Roma's. But as with other tomatoes, as long as I get my watering right and they don't go too long without water, and it's consistent, that really cuts down on blossom end rot. Now, if you are wanting some kind of a slicing tomato, a couple of varieties that continue to come up when I ask people what their suggestions are, Arthuis early girl and the better boy varieties. I have not grown those to my knowledge. I don't think that I have, because I tend to like to grow mind from seed, and I end up buying different varieties. But those were some that that do come up in conversation quite a bit. And so those are, I would say, some of the more dependable tomato varieties to start out with. And then once you kind of get your feet wet and growing tomatoes, then you might want to bump up to a little bit more exotic varieties that you hear people talking about. And they look so much fun like so much fun to grow. But if you're the type that wants to start out a little bit more conservatively, the cherry tomatoes, Juliet Roma's early girl and Better Boys are good good varieties to start out with. What about beans? Beans were one of those crops that I knew. I wanted to grow as the first time gardener, but I had never seen beans grow. My mom had never grown them when I was little girl. Not that I was paying that much attention, but I didn't know what kind of mean to grow. I mean, everybody was growing green beans. They seemed so simple. But when you're a first time gardener, even the simplest questions can seem overwhelming at times. And I remember posting on my Facebook feed my very first year. What kind of green beans should I grow? I mean, I had no idea. Well, fast forward eight years later, and I have tried multiple varieties of green beans, and I can tell you that there are a couple that have risen to the top for me as being the most dependable. And that is the Blue Lake and the Kentucky wonder. Now the Blue Lake. You can grow both as a pole being and as a bush bean and I prefer growing pole beans for lots of different reasons. They save space. They produce more over the course of the season, but they also require trellis. So if you're wanting to grow bush, bean the blue like they do come in a bush bean varieties Well, What I found with the Blue Lakes is that they have been my most dependable. No matter if I plant them too early, or if I, if they have problems with being beetles or things like that. Trust me, they do get damaged. But they have produced a consistent crop for me every single year. Some crops better than others, depending on those outside factors. Like I said, Kentucky Wonder. Very similar. I actually had more of an experience of getting Mawr harvest out of Kentucky Wonder, but I found that they ended up getting a little bit tough and stringy faster, whereas the Blue Lake stayed a little bit more tender as long as I pick them young. But both of those, I feel like our really good starter varieties of green beans. And trust me, it's so much fun to grow more exotic varieties of green beans as I've done the last two years. Last year I did the Chinese red noodle bean, and I have to say that that one that one would just took off. It was amazing, so it was really easy to grow, too. But it was one that I had trouble trying to figure out how to use it all because it was kind of a different variety. So if you're wanting a basic dependable variety of green bean, I would recommend you start out with something like the Blue Lake or the Kentucky Wonder and then branch out from there and have some fun.
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