In the UK, Viscum album is normally referred to by its common name, Mistletoe.  Mistletoe grows up in the branches of trees where it forms spherical ball-shaped plants comprised of many stems holding pairs of lovely fresh-green coloured, leathery leaves.  This evergreen shrub produces tiny white flowers followed by shiny white berries.  The oval leaves are borne in pairs and are very attractive and are naturally enhanced by the edition of gleaming Mistletoe berries, which appear in September and take many months to ripen. 

Cutting Celery is also known by the botanical name, Apium graveolens.  Cutting Celery is closely related to celery and celeriac, but these particular seeds have been selected and reselected especially for the flavour of their leaves.  The leaves taste like celery – it’s a strong flavour – so a little goes a long way, but it’s not too overpowering.  I really enjoy the taste of Cutting Celery leaves. 

‘Parcel’  or ‘Par-Cel’ is also known by the botanical name, Apium graveolens.  This is a hardy biennial plant that produces edible leaves with a strong flavour of celery; Parcel’s stems are edible too, but it is the pungent leaves that this plant is usually grown for.  The name of ‘Parcel’ was given because this edible plant has foliage that resembles parsley but when eaten it has the flavour of celery; so the plant’s common name is an amalgamation of the two names – ‘Parcel’.

Juniper is also known by its botanical name, Juniperus communisJuniperus communis is an evergreen conifer with spiky needles.  Plants are very hardy and they flourish in exposed and sheltered locations.  These plants need a bright and sunny position; Juniperus communis is happy growing in almost any moist but well-drained soil, including stony ground and chalk.  When choosing where to plant Juniperus communis, avoid shaded areas and soils that are prone to water-logging. 

Myosotis scorpioides alba is also known as the Water Forget-Me-Not.  This pretty plant requires continually wet conditions; Myosotis scorpioides alba grows in reliably wet bog gardens, as well as in streams, and ponds.  If you have a patio garden and don’t have room for a pond you can still grow Myosotis scorpioides alba by creating a container pond or bog garden .

Alliaria petiolata is a commonly found wildflower in Europe, Asia, and parts of Africa.  Whenever its foliage is bruised, crushed, or trampled, this plant’s leaves release a scent that’s reminiscent of garlic; as a consequence, in the UK, Alliaria petiolata is often called Garlic Mustard, or Hedge Garlic.  Another common name for Alliaria petiolata is Jack-by-the hedge, which reflects one of this plant’s habitats and Alliaria petiolata’s prominence as a plant that lines our hedgerows. 

Fritillaria imperialis ‘Aurora’ are statement plants with large vibrant orange coloured, pendulous flowers that really create impact in the garden.  Often referred to as Crown Imperials, these bulbous perennials form tall plants that reach up to around 1m (3.2ft) tall.

I’ve grown my Fritillaria imperialis ‘Aurora’ in large containers of peat-free compost.  I’ve found these Fritillaries to be strong and sturdy plants that haven’t required any staking or support. 

Swiss Chard (also known by the botanical name Beta vulgaris subsp. cicla var. flavescens) is a magnificent vegetable that brings a touch of its own exquisite beauty to the gardens and allotments where it’s grown.  This is another vegetable with an array of common names, it’s also called: Leaf Beet, Chard, Rhubarb Chard, and Rainbow Chard.  For ease of reference, I try my best to stick to calling this vegetable Swiss Chard; although I do also call it Chard from time to time – sorry about that.

Celeriac (also known by the botanical name Apium graveolens var. rapaceum) is not the easiest vegetable to grow; these plants have a long growing season and the seeds need to be started off in the warmth, fairly early in the season.  Celeriac seedlings will need to be protected inside a glasshouse, polytunnel, or conservatory, until all risk of frost has passed. 

Melons (also known by their botanical name Cucumis melo) are tender, sweet tasting fruits that can be successfully grown from seeds, in the UK.  Sow melon seeds in springtime – from March to the middle of May.  If you’re too late to sow seeds (or if you don’t have access to a glasshouse), you don’t have to miss out, as young melon plants can be purchased from many nurseries and garden centres.

Aubergines (also known as Eggplant or by the plant’s botanical name, Solanum melogena) are tender plants that need warmth and bright sunshine if they’re to thrive.  Sow aubergine seeds in pots of peat-free compost, inside a heated propagator or glasshouse, from January to April.  Ensure your seedlings are grown in an area that enjoys bright light.

From the end of May or beginning of June, (when there is no risk of cold temperatures or frost) if you garden in a warm area, aubergine plants can be hardened off (brought out from the glasshouse during the daytime and then taken back inside again at night for a couple of weeks), before being planted outside in a warm, bright and sunny area. 

Carrots, also known by their botanical name of Daucus carota, are an easy to grow, delicious root vegetable.  There are a wide range of carrot cultivars available for gardeners to grow, from the more regularly seen orange coloured carrots, to red, purple, white, or yellow coloured carrots.  I enjoy the subtle differences in the taste and texture of the carrots of each colour variation. 

Beetroot, also known by its botanical name of Beta vulgaris, is an easy to grow root vegetable, which can be sown outside, from March until the beginning of August, in the UK.

There are a great many beetroot cultivars available, offering beetroot in a great many shapes, sizes, and colours.

You might opt to sow a traditional, round, globe shaped beetroot, or you may choose to sow a cylindrical beetroot, which has been bred to produce evenly shaped beetroot slices, ideal for pickling, such a Beetroot ‘Alto’, an F1 Hybrid, which you can see pictured in the image for ‘Beetroot’ at the top of this page.

Asparagus, also known by its botanical name of Asparagus officinalis, is a delectable vegetable, which is made even more appetising when you eat the spears the same day they are harvested.  The sooner you eat asparagus spears, the sweeter they taste.  Freshly harvested asparagus spears have a familiarly sweet quality, it’s rather like the sweetness we enjoy when we eat freshly harvested sweetcorn. 

Apples, also known by their botanical name of Malus domestica, are a group of deciduous fruit trees, which originate from Asia and have been cultivated for a great many years.

In the UK, apples are commonly divided into two groups: culinary or cooking apples and dessert apples.  Other countries do not group, or consider apples in this way, they treat apples as one group.