Growing perennial vegetables

Most of you probably know what a perennial vegetable is but it is a veggie plant that comes back every year for those of you that don't.... talk about convenient.

Although hybrid annuals get most of the glory, by combining hybrid annuals, perennials and crops that can be replanted with their own seed (otherwise known as heirloom), a Metro Pioneer can build the ultimate garden.  You could even take it to the next level and subtract the hybrid annuals out of the equation like MIgardner if you wanted!

Now that you know why you should grow perennial vegetables, I will share two tips that I have learned.  The first tip to remember about planting perennial vegetables is that they are most likely going to be in the spot you plant them forever so pick a good one (you could dig them up and replant but I hate doing that for obvious reasons).  Make sure to fully research all perennial veggies before planting or you will not have much luck.

The other thing to remember is that they will most likely spread so make sure you account for that.  This is one thing that most people that plant perennials overlook.  I have heard many people complain that their horseradish is impeding on their asparagus plants.  Trust me, nobody wants that!

Perennials in my garden

The first perennial vegetable on my list is asparagus.  To me, asparagus is not only the ultimate perennial but the best garden crop you can grow.  Asparagus will live for up to twenty years, is easy to grow, comes on before most plants, and is tasty when grilled or steamed.  Every person should have asparagus in their garden.

The next perennial on my list is rhubarb.  Rhubarb is also a great perennial.  Rhubarb grows really well in shady areas, spreads like wildfire, and is tasty in shakes and pies.  Once a rhubarb patch is established, you will enjoy many years of tasty rhubarb pie.

The last two perennials in my garden are thyme and oregano.  Although these are herb plants and technically not veggies, they are a big part of how I cook so they made the list.  Give me a break... If any of you have read (or tried) any of my recipes, you would let it slide!  

Along with basil (which is unfortunately an annual), I put these two herbs on everything I cook.  Salsa, venison,turkey... you name it, if I am cooking it, a dash of all three go on.  Just like rhubarb and asparagus, thyme and oregano are simple to grow, taste great, and come back every year.  Free spices each year, it doesn't get much better than that!   

This concludes my list of perennial vegetables in my garden.  I know there are a couple more out there but these are the only ones I have tried so far.  I am going to try artichokes next year but don't know if they will come back the second year or not because of my climate.

If anybody has had success with artichokes coming back in Michigan or would like to share their favorite perennials with me, feel free to comment below.

Have fun!



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