New Fruit and Vegetable Varieties for 2012

Try these brand-new-for-2012, mouthwatering varieties that offer better flavor are easier to grow, or have other features perfect for your garden and kitchen. Plus get recipe ideas on how to use these new varieties in your kitchen.

By Karen Weir-Jimerson


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Tomato 'Big Daddy'
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'Big Daddy' Tomato

    Big taste, big size: 'Big Daddy' produces round and meaty ruby-red tomatoes that tip the scales at 15 ounces apiece. This delicious hybrid is a bred from the classic tomato great 'Big Boy' but has improved disease resistance.

    Name: 'Big Daddy' tomato

    Growing Conditions: Full sun and moist, well-drained soil

    Days to Maturity: 78

    Sowing Method: Indoor sow

    Type: Indeterminate

    Available from seed: Yes

    Source: burpee.com

    Photo courtesy of burpee.com

2/15
'Solar Power' Tomato

    Sweet, succulent, and packed with three times the beta-carotene of other tomatoes, 'Solar Power' is a beautiful, glowing yellow tomato that grows to be 2 inches wide -- the perfect cocktail tomato. Use fresh in salads or make into delicious and healthful sauces for pizza and pasta. Plants grow 18 inches tall and spread 60 inches.

    Name: 'Solar Power' tomato

    Growing Conditions: Full sun and moist, well-drained soil

    Days to Maturity: 75

    Sowing Method: Indoor sow

    Type: Indeterminate

    Available from seed: Yes

    Source: burpee.com

3/15
'Power Pops' Tomato

    Just plant, pluck, and pop in your mouth! 'Power Pops' is a sweet little snack that has 55 percent more lycopene and 40 percent more carotenoids than standard tomatoes. Good tasting and good for you, this small tomato variety is ideal for container gardening. Plants grow just 10 inches tall and spread 32 to 44 inches.

    Name: 'Power Pops' tomato

    Growing Conditions: Full sun and moist, well-drained soil

    Days to Maturity: 45

    Sowing Method: Indoor sow

    Type: Indeterminate

    Available from seed: Yes

    Source: burpee.com

    Photo courtesy of burpee.com

4/15
'Cherry Punch' Tomato

    Big things can come in small packages, and this cherry tomato proves it. 'Cherry Punch' produces clusters of 1-inch round red tomatoes that are packed with vitamin C (30 percent more than the average tomato) and lycopene (40 percent more than your garden-variety tomato). Enjoy health benefits and great taste!

    Name: 'Cherry Punch' tomato

    Growing Conditions: Full sun and moist, well-drained soil

    Days to Maturity: 48

    Sowing Method: Indoor sow

    Type: Indeterminate

    Available from seed: Yes

    Source: burpee.com

    Photo courtesy of burpee.com

5/15
'Cayennetta' Pepper

    Winner in the All-America Selections (AAS) vegetable category for 2012, 'Cayennetta' earned top scores for its great taste and carefree attitude. This mildly spicy 3- to 4-inch chile pepper yields large fruits on sturdy, well-branched plants (that don't require staking). Pick this pepper for patio containers so you can enjoy cut slices to add a little heat to salads and other summer dishes.

    Name: 'Cayennetta' pepper

    Growing Conditions: Full sun to part shade and moist, well-drained soil

    Days to Maturity: 69

    Sowing Method: Indoor sow

    Source: Look for this variety at your local garden center.

    Available from seed: Yes

    Photo courtesy of All-America Selections

6/15
'Cherry Stuffer' Sweet Pepper

    If you love stuffed peppers, you'll love this sweet-hot little number. 'Cherry Stuffer' produces 2-inch round, cherry-shape peppers on compact 3-foot plants. You'll get bushels of these bright red peppers -- for snacks, for stuffing, for grilling. This pepper is like 'Cherry Bomb' with the heat dialed down and the sweet amped up.

    Name: 'Cherry Stuffer' pepper

    Growing Conditions: Full sun to part shade and moist, well-drained soil

    Days to Maturity: 73

    Sowing Method: Indoor sow

    Source: burpee.com

    Available from seed: Yes

    Photo courtesy of burpee.com

7/15
'Big Guy' Jalapeno Pepper

    A 5-inch long jalapeno pepper? Si! Jalapeno lovers will want to grow this big, spicy pepper. Perfect for pickling, stuffing, or slicing into salsas and other heat-loving dishes, 'Big Guy' will add fiery flavor to your favorite recipes.

    Name: 'Big Guy' jalapeno pepper

    Growing Conditions: Full sun to part shade and moist, well-drained soil

    Days to Maturity: 69

    Sowing Method: Indoor sow

    Source: burpee.com

    Available from seed: Yes

    Photo courtesy of burpee.com

8/15
Urban Columnar Apple Series

    Small-space fruit lovers can rejoice over this tree series. The Urban Columnar varieties satisfy the apple tastes of everyone in the family. Each tree grows tall and narrow, with short branches that grow straight up. What you get is a skinny tree, but a bounty of apples nonetheless. 'Tasty Red' is a sweet, juicy, bright-red apple; 'Blushing Delight' offers a sweeter taste with reddish-green skins; 'Golden Treat' is a golden apple tinged with green that offers a crisp, tart taste in early fall; 'Tangy Green' is for tart-apple lovers. You need two varieties to cross-pollinate. Trees grow 8-10 feet tall and 2 feet wide.

    Name: Urban Columnar Apple Series

    Growing Conditions: Full sun to part shade and moist, well-drained soil

    Days to maturity: 73

    Zones: 4-9

    Source: Look for this series at your local garden center.

    Available from Seed: No

9/15
'Gold Standard' Cucumber

    You might not consider cucumbers health foods, but 'Gold Standard' will change your mind. This dark green cuke with golden flesh packs in five times the beta-carotene of other cucumbers. And you won't have to wait long for these healthful cukes -- they fruit in just 49 days. Mature cucumbers measure 6-8 inches long.

    Name: 'Gold Standard' cucumber

    Growing Conditions: Full sun and moist, well-drained soil

    Days to Maturity: 49

    Sowing Method: Direct sow

    Available from Seed: Yes

    Source: burpee.com

    Photo courtesy of burpee.com

10/15
'Big Kahuna' Bush Bean

    You don't earn the name 'Big Kahuna' without noteworthy size. And this big bush bean doesn't disappoint. Big pods measure 11 inches long and deliver major flavor, too. Beans are crisp with a nutty taste -- perfect for summer salads. Plants are compact, growing 2 feet tall and 1-1/2 feet wide, so they are ideal for small-space gardens. Try them in a container on a patio or sunny porch!

    Name: 'Big Kahuna' bush bean

    Growing Conditions: Full sun to part shade and moist, well-drained soil

    Days to Maturity: 57

    Sowing Method: Direct sow

    Source: burpee.com

    Available from seed: No

    Photo courtesy of burpee.com

11/15
'Easy Peasy' Pea

    This new variety stands out for its prolific yields. Each pod is packed with as many as 11 delicious types of spring peas, so you'll be sure to have plenty for snacking out of the garden and for freezing (so you can enjoy delicious split-pea soup this winter!).

    Name: 'Easy Peasy' pea

    Growing Conditions: Full sun to part shade and moist, well-drained soil

    Days to Maturity: 65

    Sowing Method: Direct sow outdoors

    Source: Look for this variety at your local garden center.

    Available from seed: No

    Photo courtesy of burpee.com

12/15
'Peas-in-a-Pot' Pea

    Who says you need a big backyard to grow fresh peas? 'Peas-in-a-Pot' is a small but mighty garden. Plants measure 10 inches tall and produce a bounty of fresh peas for picking. (You'll never taste peas fresher than ones you grow yourself.) Grow these easy container peas in an 8-inch-diameter container in a sunny spot outdoors.

    Name: 'Peas-in-a-Pot' pea

    Growing Conditions: Full sun to part shade and moist, well-drained soil

    Days to Maturity: 65

    Sowing Method: Direct sow

    Source: burpee.com

    Available from seed: Yes

    Photo courtesy of burpee.com

13/15
Healing Hands Mix Lettuce

    As beautiful as it is delicious and nutritious, Healing Hands greens mix takes the guesswork out of creating a super salad. Four different greens are packed into the mix. Just plant, water, and watch seedlings emerge to create a gorgeous bowl of salad. It serves up 20 percent more lutein and 30 percent more beta-carotene than the average salad greens. Harvest greens when they are 6 inches tall. They'll regrow, and you can cut them again in about three weeks. Keep harvesting again and again, as long as the plants hold out.

    Name: Healing Hands Mix lettuce

    Growing Conditions: Full sun to part shade and moist, well-drained soil

    Days to Maturity: 28-42

    Sowing Method: Direct sow

    Source: burpee.com

    Available from seed: Yes

    Photo courtesy of Ball Horticultural

14/15
'Faerie' Watermelon

    Not your traditional watermelon! 'Faerie' sports a creamy-yellow rind with thin stripes. But crack it open and you'll find everything that makes watermelon summer's favorite treat: crisp pink-red flesh is oh-so-sweet with a high sugar content. Fruits measure 7-8 inches and weigh 4-6 pounds: the perfect family-size melon. 'Faerie' is an All-America Selections (AAS) vegetable award winner for 2012.

    Name: 'Faerie' watermelon

    Growing Conditions: Full sun to part shade and moist, well-drained soil

    Days to Maturity: 75

    Sowing Method: Direct sow

    Source: Look for this variety at your local garden center.

    Available from seed: Yes

    Photo courtesy of All-America Selections

15/15
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