Cabbage is a cold season plant and the ideal temperature for its growth is 15-18 degrees Celsius. Cabbages are planted mainly in sunny positions in the fall, although semi-shaded positions are useful in early summer plantings when it is very hot. Cabbage can grow in all types of soil, except very acidic soils. It is important that the soil has good drainage to remove excess water from watering and to ensure good aeration of the roots. For early cabbages we prefer sandy, light warm soils, while for late cabbages we prefer heavier and more fertile soils with good drainage, rich in organic matter. 3. How do we plant the cabbages and at what distances? We can raise cabbage plants from seed to maintain traditional varieties or keep our own seeds from the plants every year. Planting in a nursery takes 4-6 weeks until the young plants are ready for transplanting in the field. Ideal temperatures for seed germination and plant growth are 15-20 degrees Celsius. Alternatively, we can get ready-made cabbage plants from agricultural stores and nurseries in our area. Cabbage is transplanted from mid-August to early November depending on the growing conditions in each region.
Eggplant, the summer’s favorite vegetable! Eggplant is one of the main ingredients of the Mediterranean cuisine that we enjoy in unique summer recipes, from the world-famous moussaka, to the wonderful shoes and the Asia Minor imam baildi. Eggplant is a vegetable with high nutritional value that contains many antioxidants and vitamins. It is eaten mainly grilled, fried but also stewed. We avoid eating eggplant raw, because of its bitter taste, as well as the solanine, a toxic substance it contains when harvested prematurely.
The eggplant crop grows to a height of about 80-90 centimeters and usually does not need subtiling. Eggplant leaves have a smooth upper surface and are smooth while the underside is relatively fluffy. It is planted in the spring and forms characteristic purple flowers that give us the fruits in the summer.
There are many known varieties and hybrids of eggplant to grow. It is important to choose eggplant varieties from our own seed that we keep, so that we know the special characteristics of each variety and how it adapts to the conditions of our region. Among the traditional and local eggplant varieties, we distinguish the Lagada eggplant variety with its long, narrow purple fruits, the purple flask eggplant used in stuffed foods, as well as the teardrop eggplant with its characteristic shape. The two-colored Tsakonian eggplant with its white and purple stripes is also unique and particularly popular and does not taste bitter. Also, the Santorini eggplant is a very distinctive variety with impressive white round fruits and a delicious sweet taste that is not bitter.
Eggplant cultivation grows best in areas with a warm climate. It is worth mentioning that the eggplant needs more heat than the tomato crop and the pepper crop, as well as being much more sensitive to low temperatures and frost. Eggplant planting takes place from April onwards, when the temperature has risen noticeably. Eggplant grows in loose, fertile soils that have good drainage to remove excess water. When preparing the soil for cultivation and before planting the eggplant, we plow the garden and incorporate enough organic matter into the planting pits in the form of compost and digested manure, as well as complete organic fertilizer.
What are the most popular radish varieties to grow? There are many species and varieties of radish to choose from and grow. First, the wild radish with its bitter taste and characteristic green jagged leaves that turn red at the base. Stamnagathi is also a variety of wild radish. And then there is the tame radish with the upright, wider leaves, lighter at the base and with less bitterness. Also, the Italian radish with its upright toothed leaves, spicy bitter taste and many harvests. Let’s not forget radicchio, the radish variety with crimson leaves and white nerves that close like lettuce leaves. Radizio has a strong spiciness when eaten raw that fades with cooking. Radish is a horticultural plant that loves the cold environment and that is why it is planted in the autumn season when we have low temperatures, humidity and few hours of daily sunshine. After all, at high temperatures, the radish blooms prematurely and is unsuitable for consumption. We plant radishes in sunny or semi-shady places and we prefer rich, fertile and cool soils that ensure good drainage. If we plant in the ground, we incorporate organic matter in the form of compost and digested manure for better root development. To plant it in a pot, we use potting soil special for horticulture, rich in organic matter and nutrients, and place the pot on a balcony with western or eastern exposure for the radish culture to thrive.
Stevia is a perennial plant, also known as melophyllo or sweet leaf of Paraguay. Stevia contains a substance, steviol, which has a high sweetening power, which is why it is used as a sweetener instead of sugar. We can grow stevia in a pot or in the garden and harvest its leaves to sweeten our coffee, tea or to use in various homemade sweets.
Purslane, also known as anthrakla, is an annual, native, multi-branched plant of the Mediterranean with characteristic smooth and fleshy shoots. Wormwood grows in cultivated fields and especially in vegetable gardens that are watered in late spring and bears small yellow flowers. Although often considered an unwanted grass (weed) in the garden, buttercup is edible, very tasty and has a high nutritional value.
Chives thrive in fertile soils, rich in organic matter and with very good drainage. It seeks a cool environment, it is resistant to cold and in sunny places it shows better growth and production, however, excessive moisture tends to cause it to rot in the root. Chives are propagated by seed. We can plant the chives directly by sowing in the field as long as when it reaches a growth of 10-15 cm we thin them at distances of 20-30 cm. If we get ready-made plants from a nursery, we plant them at suitable planting distances of 30-40 cm between plants and 50-60 cm between rows. To plant the chives on the balcony, choose a pot with a diameter of 30 cm and add general-purpose potting soil, enriched in nutrients, that ensures good drainage.