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35 Exotic Fruits, Vegetables and Herbs

Try your hand at growing this unusual collection of edibles that hail from countries all over the world.

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Photo: Shutterstock / siraphat

Broccoli Romanesco

Romanesco looks a little like a cactus, with tight clusters of bright-green cone-shaped heads. The taste is said to be milder than regular broccoli, with a delicious nuttiness. Also called Romanesque cauliflower, this veggie is a cool season crop that will bolt in the summer heat—gardeners in climates with hot summers should plant in late summer to early fall for best results.

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Photo: Courtesy of The Cooks Garden

Cucumber, Mexican Sour Gherkin

This mini cuke, 'Mexican Sour Cherkin,' has a tangy taste that’s a mixture of sour and sweet. The cucumbers grow to about one inch and are ready in  60 to 70 days. Try the plants in hanging baskets or support them on trellises.

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Photo: Courtesy of W. Atlee Burpee & Co.

Brokali 'Apollo' Hybrid

Tender and sweet, Brokali 'Apollo' is a cross between Calabrese broccoli and kale. The side shoots are just as flavorful as the tops. Expect to harvest this gourmet green in 50 to 60 days from sowing. 

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Photo: Babe Farms, Inc.,

Watermelon Radish

Watermelon radishes, also called red daikon, get their name from their pink to white exterior and vibrant magenta flesh. Watermelon radishes have a milder, sweeter flavor than other radish types. The heirloom Chinese radish grows best in cool weather, making it an excellent fall or winter crop.

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