7 Naturally Sweet Crops to Satisfy Your Sugar Craving!

, written by Benedict Vanheems gb flag

Sweet corn

Growing your own fruits and vegetables is incredibly satisfying, and naturally pushes us in the direction of a healthier and more balanced diet. But what to do about that nagging sweet tooth? Most us have got one and, for me at least, it demands considerable restraint! But what if you could satisfy that craving with what you can grow in your own garden?

Read on or watch our video to discover seven naturally sweet fruits and vegetables that are sure to keep even the sweetest tooth happy!

1. Sweet Corn

Sweet corn is a good place to start, with modern varieties bred for exceptional sweetness. Grow it in a sunny position in rich, fertile soil to get the very sweetest cobs. You can check whether they’re ready to pick once the tassels have turned brown. Peel back the husk and sink a nail into one of the kernels. If it’s ripe, it will exude a milky juice. The fresher the cob, the sweeter it will be, so pick it just before you plan to eat it.

2. Peas

Peas also benefit from being picked and eaten promptly. Look for a variety with ‘sweet’ or ‘sugar’ in its name – a good clue to its taste! As well as sweet varieties of pea, try sugarsnap and mangetout types. You can sow peas outdoors from spring right through to summer, giving you a long cropping period of delicious pods.

“Sweet

3. Tomatoes

Some tomato varieties are sweeter than others and, as a rule, the smaller the sweeter, so opt for cherry tomatoes. To encourage a higher concentration of natural sugars in the fruits, apply a liquid tomato fertilizer regularly but avoid overwatering because this will dilute the flavor compounds.

4. Beets

Beets may be sown from spring right through to summer to offer a steady supply of roots. Enjoy them liberally doused in oil and balsamic vinegar, then slowly roasted with other sweet-tasting roots such as carrots and parsnips. Miniature, or baby beets are ready to pick just two months after sowing. Harvest them before they get too big – no bigger than golf ball sized for the sweetest roots.

“Sweet

5. Carrots

Like beets, carrots may be sown over a long season. And like beets, smaller roots are the sweetest. Select varieties that produce pencil-sized roots, or try the Chantenay types beloved by chefs. Some varieties are bred specifically with sweetness in mind, so look out for any described as sweet tasting.

6. Strawberries

We grow more strawberries in our gardens than any other fruit. Ripe, sun-warmed strawberries are one of the most satisfying experiences any gardener can enjoy, and kids love helping seek out and pick the fruits. Extend your harvest by planting a range of early, mid and late-season varieties. Alpine or wild strawberries are tiny but have a remarkable fragrance and flavor.

“Sweet

7. Melon

Nothing compares to the sweetness of a perfectly ripe melon. Melons need a long, warm summer to succeed, so in temperate regions it’s usually safest to grow them in a greenhouse or tunnel. Honeydew melons are the sweetest, while cantaloupe types are the most reliable, so go for these if you’re unsure. Pick them at their prime for the best flavor. The stalk should be cracked, while one end of the fruit will be slightly soft. And you won’t be able to miss its truly dreamy scent.

It’s such a treat to be able to grow crops like these! If you have any fruits or vegetables you prize for their sweetness, or perhaps a specific variety you grow for your sugar fix, then please tell us about it in the comments section below.

< All Guides

Garden Planning Apps

If you need help designing your vegetable garden, try our Vegetable Garden Planner (for PC & Mac) or if you'd prefer an app for your mobile or tablet device, our iPad & iPhone app Garden Plan Pro is available on the App Store here.
Garden Planning Apps and Software

Vegetable Garden Pest Warnings

Want to Receive Alerts When Pests are Heading Your Way?

If you've seen any pests or beneficial insects in your garden in the past few days please report them to The Big Bug Hunt and help create a warning system to alert you when bugs are heading your way.

Show Comments



Comments

 

Add a Comment

Add your own thoughts on the subject of this article:
(If you have difficulty using this form, please use our Contact Form to send us your comment, along with the title of this article.)

 
   
(We won't display this on the website or use it for marketing)



Captcha


(Please enter the code above to help prevent spam on this article)



By clicking 'Add Comment' you agree to our Terms and Conditions