Home Vegetables James Wong’s seeds for Suttons

James Wong’s seeds for Suttons


Grow veg you can’t buy in the shops

Want to grow something different in your veg patch or greenhouse? James Wong’s vegetables for Suttons aren’t the norm but are easy to grow and taste delicious.

James said: “To my mind, by far the most convincing reason to grow your own is the simple fact it allows you to access a whole world of otherwise unbuyable varieties.”

Here’s the selection for 2017:

Amaranth grains: Tastes like malty, brown rice. This grain has been cultivated for about 8,000 years. Enough seeds to grow a double crop of a small amount of grains, which contain nutrients and amino acids, to sprinkle on cereal. Foliage can be used as young spinach or in stir-fries.
500 seeds, £2.49

Asparagus pea: Tastes like fresh asparagus and garden peas. Combines the flavour of garden peas and fresh asparagus in its tiny, curiously shaped pea pods.
30 seeds, £2.49

Callaloo: Tastes like a mix of spinach, broccoli and watercress. Extremely versatile in the kitchen and decorative in your garden coming in shades from acid green and orange to the deepest blood-red.
38 seeds, £2.49

Chilli pepper Chilaca: When it is dried and smoked it is known as a pasilla, meaning ‘little raisin’, because of its sweet, berry-like flavour with distinct hints of chocolate. Essential for an authentic Mexican mole sauce. Measures 500-2,000 on the Scoville Scale.
8 seeds, £2.49

Chilli pepper Serrano: Jalapeno’s hotter little brother, with a similar bright, biting flavour. Usually eaten raw, its thick, crisp flesh adds a crunch to guacamole and salsa. Measures 15,000-20,000 on the Scoville scale.
8 seeds, £2.49

Chilli pepper Trinidad Perfume: All the fruity flavour of Scotch Bonnet, but with zero spice, perfect if you love the tangy fruitiness of Habanero peppers but don’t like the heat. The ultimate chilli-hater’s chilli. Measures 0-500 on the Scoville Scale.
8 seeds, £2.49

Cucamelon: Already a firm favourite in our house, these tiny watermelon lookalikes have a refreshing flavour, cucumber with a hint of lime.
20 seeds, £2.49

Electric daisies: These pretty little daisy flowers taste like citrus with a jolt of electricity! Their fizzy electric buzz effect is like popping candy or cloves, perfect for spicing up your cooking or cocktails.
220 seeds, £2.49

Goji berry: Needs no attention, pruning, feeding or care and is at its most productive when under stress. This variety gives larger fruit yields in the UK. Packed with antioxidants.
30 seeds, £2.49

Hyacinth bean: Tastes like chestnut, floury, mangetout. Stunning purple mangetout-style pods follow fuchsia-pink flowers. The more you pick the more they produce. I grew them last year but seemingly not warm enough in NE England to flower.
7 seeds, £2.49

Inca berries: Recognisable in patisseries, these shiny golden berries, each wrapped in its own paper Chinese lantern, are one of the trendiest garnishes around. Also known as the Cape Gooseberry, the golden berry, or simply by its genus name ‘Physalis’, these sticky amber balls have a rich flavour of ripe gooseberries with a hint of tropical fruit, followed by a pleasant bittersweet aftertaste.
15 seeds, £2.49

Parsley eagle: The perfect two-in-one crop. Masses of flat-leaved parsley with sweet mini parsnips. Flavour is similar to that of parsnips but with the cleaner, grassy freshness of parsley.
75 seeds, £2.49

Quinoa: Tastes like couscous, nutty, hop-like. The sacred grain of the Incas that will grow easily even in cool, wet climates – 10 plants will produce up to 0.5kg (1lb) of grain.
410 seeds, £2.49

Nasturtium leaves: This exotic Incan vegetable has been unfairly relegated to the flower border. It will adorn your veg beds with an almost inexhaustible supply of peppery leaves, watercress-flavoured flowers and crisp seed pods.
25 seeds, £2.49

Samphire: The superfood loved by the Victorians. Distinctive, crisp and salty taste. Grows well indoors and outdoors. Treat as a ‘cut and come again’ crop.
250 seeds, £2.49

Popcorn Fiesta: Growing popcorn is as easy as ordinary sweetcorn but requires a slightly longer growing season to allow its kernels to fully ripen.
25 seeds, £2.49

Squash Tromboncino: Italian cultivar with a mild artichoke flavour and long, seed-free neck. A variety of butternut squash, picked while still tender and green. Tastes sweeter than most courgettes.
20 seeds, £2.49

Salsola (land seaweed): Italian salad leaves that are crisp on the outside but succulent and slippery within. Easy to grow plants that respond well to repeated clipping.
300 seeds, £2.49


Tomatillo: Perfect in salsa, sauces and guacamole. Very similar to its relative, the tomato, but easier to grow. Sealed inside their own little paper envelopes, these round, green tomato-like fruit hail from Mexico and were once more widely grown there than tomatoes. They taste like a cross between a lime and beefsteak tomato.
25 seeds, £2.49

For more details, visit www.suttons.co.uk.

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Mandy Watson is a freelance journalist and an incurable plantaholic. MandyCanUDigIt grew from the tiny seed of a Twitter account into the rainforest of information you see before you. Gardening columnist for the Sunderland Echo, Shields Gazette and Hartlepool Mail and editor of the Teesdale Mercury Magazine. Attracted by anything rebellious, exotic and nerdy, even after all these years. Passionate about northern England and gardens everywhere. Falls over a lot.


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