There are a large number of perennial vegetables available which have been selected for their vigorous growth, favorable taste, lower content of bad tasting or toxic substances, and beauty. Once established, plantings of perennial vegetables can provide an abundance of leafy vegetables for years.
Many perennial vegetables can be grown on the edge of tree plantings, such as along paths. They can serve other functions around the house such as view screens (Pacific spinach, moringa), ground covers (sweet potato, bitter melon), and edge plants as a barrier to weeds (sissoo spinach, garlic chives). Many of these plants have medicinal as well as culinary utility.
Most modern gardens have tended to focus on just a very few leafy edible species, most of which are short-lived annuals, such as lettuce, cabbage, and common spinach. Adding lesser-known perennials to the garden contributes to diversity in the ecosystem and the diet.
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