Uncommon Greens and Fruits You Can Solely Develop

You received’t discover these on the grocery retailer! These uncommon greens and fruits are onerous to return by except you develop them your self. Out of the 1000’s of choices of edibles on the market, listed below are a handful of my favourites.

radish pods are a rare vegetable you can only grow
Radish pods

With regards to the grocery retailer, produce isn’t chosen for its flavour. Vegatables and fruits are chosen based mostly on their measurement and talent to journey and retailer properly. As an example, you already know and acknowledge orange carrots. But when I develop them, I’ll develop the crimson heirloom varieties for his or her sweeter flavour.

Or tomatoes. The heirloom varieties ripened on the solar have THE finest flavour, and people within the grocery retailer aren’t even near competing.

Sure, these uncommon greens you possibly can solely develop don’t ship or retailer properly. It’s why you received’t see them on the grocery retailer. However for those who don’t develop them your self, you might by no means get to style their splendour.

There are an estimated quarter of one million crops we are able to use for agricultural functions. So, in fact, I’m solely going to call a handful. Use this listing of uncommon greens and fruits as a jumping-off level in your personal edible backyard.

Golden Raspberries are an unusual fruit
Golden raspberries

The Want for Agricultural Range

The Meals and Agricultural Group of the United Nations estimates that we use solely 3% of the quarter of one million crops obtainable for agricultural use. Even additional, ¾ of the world’s meals provide depends on simply 12 mega crops, together with rice, wheat, and maize.

Whereas our meals system is extremely productive, it’s extraordinarily fragile. Check out bananas, for instance. In the course of the later half of the nineteenth century, the most well-liked number of bananas was Gros Michel, identified for its style and resistance to bruising.

Nonetheless, in the course of the Nineteen Fifties, a illness often called Panama Illness (banana wilt) swept via and destroyed business manufacturing of the banana. This pressured producers to change to a brand new disease-resistant selection, Cavendish. Which now accounts for roughly 47% of the worldwide banana manufacturing and could possibly be worn out by one other practice of the banana wilt.

One other well-known instance is the Nice Famine in Eire. One-third of Eire’s inhabitants relied on potatoes for meals, and potato blight contaminated most crops. An estimated 1 million folks died as a direct consequence, both as a result of illness or starvation.

We grow to be more and more susceptible by specializing in only some extremely productive crops. Local weather change makes excessive droughts, flooding, various temperatures, and illness outbreaks extra frequent, and variety is one of the best ways to grow to be resilient.

unusual vegetables to grow at home
Nettle is definitely a brilliant inexperienced, however most contemplate it a weed.

Uncommon Greens and Fruits to Develop at Dwelling

These uncommon greens and crops are onerous to return by, even at a backyard centre in some instances. Oftentimes, you may get them from one other gardener. Group gardens are nice locations to share crops!


Often known as Jerusalem artichokes, these are edible tubers that may be cooked and eaten like a potato. Above floor, they sprout very tall, sunflower-like flowers. They will stand up to 5-10 ft tall.

The tubers are very prolific, coming again yr after yr, even once you suppose you’ve harvested all of them. They’re very low upkeep.

They’ve a barely nutty flavour and may solely be eaten in managed quantities as a result of inflicting gasoline and bloating.

rare vegetables to grow
Harvest sunchokes within the fall.

Radish Pods

Whereas radishes could also be a highly regarded vegetable, their seed pods are a lesser-known manner of having fun with the vegetable. I got here to know radish pods after volunteering at UBC to show inner-city children about gardening. Their gardens could be left alone in the summertime, that means the radishes would go unharvested and go to seed.

The radish pods have a barely spicy style and an look just like edamame. You may eat them uncooked like a snap pea or embrace them in stir-fries, soups, or salads.


Sure, you possibly can technically get rhubarb on the grocery retailer. However most individuals don’t because it’s not the everyday sort of plant you hunt down. As an alternative, you often have a plant in your yard, otherwise you’re gifted some rhubarb…and understand you’ve bought to do one thing with it!

However I extremely advocate we begin making rhubarb extra mainstream. It’s very prolific, it’s straightforward to develop, and it’s a perennial.

vegetables you can only grow
Solely the stalks of rhubarb ought to be eaten.

Egyptian Strolling Onions

This text concept all started with Egyptian strolling onions since you possibly can’t actually purchase them. I inherited my very own from a neighborhood backyard. And after you have them, you’re set.

They get their identify from the bizarre manner they develop. The flowers that bloom on the prime of the flower flip into tiny bulbs often called aerial bulbils. Because the plant will get heavier, they droop down till the tiny bulbs hit the bottom. They plant themselves, slowly strolling across the backyard.

Floor Cherries

Floor cherries develop low to the bottom, with loads of darkish inexperienced leaves and small yellow flowers that flip into golden, cherry-sized fruit.

Their style is just like tomatillos, with a touch of pineapple flavour. And in contrast to another uncommon greens on this listing, they final of their paper husks for as much as 3 months. They’ve built-in storage with their paper husks.

Pile of harvested ground cherries with the husk on
All crops, together with floor cherries, within the Physalis genus have papery husks often called calyx.

Luffa Gourds

There’s an opportunity you’ve had a luffa gourd in your home and didn’t realize it. These unique greens are literally mostly used as an natural bathe loofah, however they’re additionally edible.

They develop on very vigorous vines. When younger and tender, you possibly can eat them, they usually style like summer time squash. When left to mature on the vibe, they flip fibrous and might dry into these pure bathe loofahs.


Tayberries are a cross between raspberries and blackberries. When completely ripe, they’ve a really candy flavour, however you need to get the timing proper, or they’re fairly bitter.

These berries will flip to mush and crumble very quickly after you choose them. They’re finest eaten straight from the vine and received’t ripen anymore as soon as picked.

However in the long run, I personally suppose they’re tastier than each raspberries and blackberries!

rare fruits and vegetables to grow at home
These berries take longer to ripen and have to be a bit squishy in order that they’re not too bitter.


You may know these little inexperienced fruits as mouse melons or Mexican bitter gherkins. These have been a standard fruit eaten by the Aztec folks and have misplaced reputation over time. However they seem like little grape-sized watermelons!

Cucamelons style virtually like a citrusy cucumber. I wish to pickle them or toss them into salads. Or popped straight from the vine and into my mouth.

a bounty of cucamelons form the garden
Eat a cucamelon in its entirety, popping the pores and skin, seed, and fruit in your mouth.

Honourable Mentions

As I’ve talked about, I might add many uncommon greens and different edibles to the listing. Listed here are a couple of uncommon greens and crops which might be price mentioning:

  • Lovage
  • Mulberries
  • Salmonberries
  • Saskatoon berries
  • Tomatillo
  • Endive
  • Winter radishes
  • Inexperienced amaranth
  • Goumi berry
goumi berry
Goumi Berry (Elaeagnus multiflora)

Extra Edibles to Take into account Rising

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