Our own native pepper shrub with a big flavour. Use it to give peppery heat to meat and fish dishes. It will grow slowly to about 2 metres in full sun to deep shade, in anything from dry to just damp ground (in the wild it grows in damp, shady areas). The leaf colour varies from green to speckled red, depending on the sunshine.
This plant is chock-full of goodness – it contains the same amount of vitamin C as oranges. The plant is tall and branching and can reach up to one metre with small dandelion-like flowers. You see it growing everywhere, on wasteland and by the side of the road.
This native plant grows in coastal regions and is an excellent culinary herb. It looks like Italian parsley but with bulkier leafs. The taste is crisp and intense — an ideal addition to a salad. Tasting more like parsley than celery, this is a creeping plant that grows easily; it just needs heaps of water to keep it juicy. Eat raw or cooked.
This NZ native is used in the same way and is becoming a must-have in many gardens. Fast-growing and tasty, the leaves are arrow-shaped and thicker than regular spinach. It’s great for hot weather and can be picked over a long period. Highly nutritious, a great source of folic acid, iron, and vitamins A and C. Ensure they are blanched or steamed before eating.