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Growing your greens!

 
gardener
Posts: 324
Location: North Fork, CA. USDA Zone 9a, Heat Zone 8, 37 degrees North, Sunset 7/9, elevation 2600 feet
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I'm trying to come up with a list of greens I can grow. I am breaking them down into three catagories; cool season, warm season greens, and Perennials. Some of the plants in the first two categories may be perenials, but are typically treated as annuals. To qualify as a green they should be the leaves or herbaceous stem of a plant. They can be eaten raw as in salads, or cooked liked spinach. Please add any plants you know of, or any suggestions and changes.

Cool Seasons:
Lettuce
Spinach
Chard
Kale
Miners Lettuce
Chickweed
Fava Bean Greens
Radish Greens
Shepherds Purse
Viola

Warm Season:
New Zealand Spinach
Malabar Spinach
Purslane
Nasturtium
Sweet Potato Leaves
Moringa
Lamb's Quarters
Orach
Amaranth

Perennials:
Nopale
Linden
Perennial Broccoli
Tree Collards
Nettles
Mock Strawberry
Anise Hyssop
Egyptian Onion
Salt Bush
Rose of Sharon
Musk Mallow
Garlic Cress
Sorrel
Dandelion Greens
Turkish Rocket
Asparagus
Sea Kale
Good King Henry
 
pollinator
Posts: 11842
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
1175
cat forest garden fish trees chicken fiber arts wood heat greening the desert
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Tree Collards are perennial, regular collards seem to live a long time - mine are over two years old. Edible year round.



 
pollinator
Posts: 3490
Location: Massachusetts, Zone:6/7 AHS:4 GDD:3000 Rainfall:48in even Soil:SandyLoam pH6 Flat
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Here is a list of perennial.
http://perennialvegetables.org/perennial-vegetables-for-each-climate-type/mediterranean-and-mild-subtropical/

You should also look into vegetables that self-seed so that you dont have to replant every year. Below is a list that I got off the internet and off permie.com

Herbs: basil, chamomile, cilantro, cutting celery, dill, parsley

Vegetables: amaranth, arugula, beets, broccoli raab, carrots, collards, kale, lettuce, orach, mustards, New Zealand spinach, parsnips, pumpkin, radish, rutabaga, tomatillo, tomato, turnips, winter squash, dill, borage (flowers tasty), lamb’s quarters. Strawberry spinach

Flowers: bachelor button, calendula, celosia, cosmos, nasturtiums, poppies, sunflowers, sweet alyssum, viola

Beet, turnips, parsnip, sweet potatoes, irish potatoes, yams, onions, garlic, etc

Asparagus, Rhubarb, walking onions, lovage, horseradish, Jeruselem artichokes, nettles (cooked of course), safir celery, salad burnet, sorrel, prickly-pear cactus, dandelion (I know everyone hates these), purslane, good king henry, chickweed, balsamroot — Balsamorhiza,
Perennial Sunflower-Edible Root and Seeds, Jerusalem Artichoke

turkish rocket, groundnut, ramps, welsh onion, skirret,

Other useful perennial things :

Seasonings: French tarragon, chives, garlic chives, oregano, marjoram, thymes, sage, costmary, parsley (bi-annual)

Teas: lemon balm, mints, chamomile, fennel

Medicinals: red clover, valerian, self heal, Echinacea, comfrey, dandelion, hops, lavendar, lemon balm, hyssop, horehound, feverfew, calendula (reseeder), bee balm (reseeder), mullein (reseeder), plantain, rue

 
gardener
Posts: 2450
Location: Cascades of Oregon
450
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Two things I didn't see listed that I have had good luck with perrenial broccoli and fava bean greens. The perrenial broccoli doesn't really give a head and the fava becomes a dual purpose plant.
In my yard I now have strawberry spinach everywhere after allowing the chickens to clean up a bed the chickens poop makes an effective seed bomb. Easy to control if you zip through with a hoe before the seed heads form.
 
S Bengi
pollinator
Posts: 3490
Location: Massachusetts, Zone:6/7 AHS:4 GDD:3000 Rainfall:48in even Soil:SandyLoam pH6 Flat
457
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forest garden solar
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Robert Ray wrote:Two things I didn't see listed that I have had good luck with perrenial broccoli and fava bean greens. The perrenial broccoli doesn't really give a head and the fava becomes a dual purpose plant.
In my yard I now have strawberry spinach everywhere after allowing the chickens to clean up a bed the chickens poop makes an effective seed bomb. Easy to control if you zip through with a hoe before the seed heads form.



Can we really eat fava bean leaves? I have some growing outside right now, I knew that the "beans" are edible but have never heard about the leaves being eaten.
 
Robert Ray
gardener
Posts: 2450
Location: Cascades of Oregon
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Yes, you can eat them. I was introduced to the greens before I had ever eaten the bean.
 
Steve Flanagan
gardener
Posts: 324
Location: North Fork, CA. USDA Zone 9a, Heat Zone 8, 37 degrees North, Sunset 7/9, elevation 2600 feet
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I planted the rest of my fava beans back in the fall. Some have flowers. We have been having some very cold nights, I hope that doesn't ruin them.
I have picked and ate fava greens before, not bad.

I'm trying to dramatically augment my diet to include lots and lots of greens.
 
Steve Flanagan
gardener
Posts: 324
Location: North Fork, CA. USDA Zone 9a, Heat Zone 8, 37 degrees North, Sunset 7/9, elevation 2600 feet
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Robert Ray wrote:Two things I didn't see listed that I have had good luck with perrenial broccoli and fava bean greens. The perrenial broccoli doesn't really give a head and the fava becomes a dual purpose plant.
In my yard I now have strawberry spinach everywhere after allowing the chickens to clean up a bed the chickens poop makes an effective seed bomb. Easy to control if you zip through with a hoe before the seed heads form.



I love strawberry spinach. I love the greens and the fruits. I saved some seeds and also scattered other around my garden. I really hope they come up again next year.
 
S Bengi
pollinator
Posts: 3490
Location: Massachusetts, Zone:6/7 AHS:4 GDD:3000 Rainfall:48in even Soil:SandyLoam pH6 Flat
457
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I will have to start eating them as greens.
 
pollinator
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Quinoa leaves are edible, and there are quinoas used for their leaves, but a better bet, with more leaves and better flavor, is huauzontle, aka Aztec Spinach https://www.wildgardenseed.com/index.php?cPath=39. It is from Mexico, and you can eat the leaves--which seems to work best in the north--or the unopened flower heads, much like broccoli. In Mexico these are battered and fried, among other preparations.
Another member of this genus is Magentaspreen, or Giant Lambsquarters. https://www.adaptiveseeds.com/product/vegetables/greens/lambsquarter-magenta-spreen-organic/   And there is wild lambsquarters, a common weed, which is itself edible as greens.

There is a continuum from wild lambsquarters (Chenopodium album) through Magentaspreen (C. gigantea), and Huazontle (C. berlandieri) to quinoa (C. quinoa)--each more of a garden plant than the last. Domestication results in faster germination (lambsquarters may take months to sprout) and laarger volume of food produced per plant, as it doesn't have to spend so much of its energy perpetuating and defending itself. All are related to amaranth, which has already been mentioned.

Perpetual Spinach is a different type of chard from the familiar Swiss Chard, with narrower stems and softer leaves. It is perennial in zones 6-9 or so. Just as Brassica oleracea has been bred into various forms--cabbage, kale, collards, cauliflower, broccoli, and kohlrabi--that are still all one species, Beta vulgaris has been bred into several forms.  In the UK, this is reflected in their common names: Beetroot (what we call beets), Silverbeet (what we call Swiss Chard) and Leafbeet/Perpetual Spinach (which we mostly don't grow, or call by various Italian names.)  

Perpetual Spinach and Perennial Arugula are the most like their familiar annual counterparts of any perennials I know. They are both tap rooted and drought-tolerant. In my experience, most perennial vegetables that are palatable in a familiar way--are either from northern maritime climates (perennial broccoli, Seakale, Good King Henry) or semi-to-fully tropical, needing not only heat but moisture. That makes these two real finds for gardeners in the arid west and Mediterranean climates.
Perpetual spinach: https://www.quailseeds.com/store/p9/Perpetual_Spinach_%28Leafbeet%29_Chard.html  
Perennial Arugula https://www.quailseeds.com/store/p295/Perennial_Arugula%2C_Rucola_selvatica%2C_Wild_Rocket_%22Sylvetta.html  
Mine do need some irrigation, but not nearly as much as other veg. I have even had plants survive without irrigation, but they did go dormant. Note that arugula is milder when cooked and can be used in quantity if cooked in boiling water for a few minutes, alone or along with pasta or potatoes.
 
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