5 unusual crops for owners of a garden greenhouse in the UK
Sunday, 9 October 2016
Most gardeners lucky enough to own a garden greenhouse in the UK use it to grow ripe, blight-free tomatoes, or plentiful cucumbers. Keen gardeners use theirs to extend the growing season, protecting seedlings at the beginning of the year and overwintering tender plants.
For those of you who’d like to try growing something a little more exciting, here are 5 unusual crops for greenhouse growers.
Melons don’t like our climate, but they do enjoy the heat and humidity under cover, just like cucumbers. Planted into a mound, they can be left to trail or given nets to climb up (which makes better use of space). Pinch out the growing tips to encourage bushiness, and restrict to four lateral stems. Feed as tomatoes.
Sweet peppers and chillies thrive in the extra heat and light a greenhouse provides. A chilli’s ‘heat’ depends on how much heat it receives, as well as its variety, so a greenhouse is the ideal spot if you want yours to be ferocious! You can also grow unusual chillies, such as Rocotos, in a greenhouse. Again, feed like tomatoes.
3. Sweet potatoes
Sweet potatoes don’t crop well outside in a typical British summer. They are big plants, and need space to trail. Traditionally grown from ‘slips’, they are now available as plants in spring. Plant deeply to encourage tuber production, and don’t give them too much nitrogen.
4. Lab Lab beans
A little bit different to our traditional beans, Lab Lab beans are an Asian favourite. Grow them the same way you’d grow French beans, but in the greenhouse, and pick beans as they reach a good size. Remember to stop and smell their scented flowers!
Dudi, the bottle gourd, is a popular Indian vegetable. It grows like a climbing courgette, but appreciates the extra heat a greenhouse brings. Sow seeds at the same time as your squash and courgettes, then harvest the fruits when they’re young.
These are just the tip of the iceberg, so if you’ve got a big garden greenhouse in the UK, there are plenty of new plants you can try. If you're looking for the perfect garden greenhouse to grow your unusual fruit and veg in, contact South West Greenhouses today to discover the ideal fit for your garden.