While all plants have something to offer a gardener (except maybe invasive weeds), plants that bear vegetables and fruits are of an especially great value to the home gardener. There are many fruits and vegetables that can be grown at home, whether it's from a majestic tree or a low growing perennial.
Easy to grow and exceptionally cold hardy, Chinese cabbage (Brassica rapa) is an excellent plant for those who want edible vegetables as well as attractive foliage and flowers. The plant is a quick grower, producing tiny yellow blooms and flesh edible leaves. Chinese cabbage should always be grown in full sunlight, in moist, nitrogen-rich soil. Chinese cabbage works well as a border, and can be grown with ease in containers.
Boasting small delicate blooms and hot pink plum fruits, Natal plum (Carissa macrocarpa) is an attractive evergreen shrub or small tree that is commonly grown as an ornamental. Native to Northern South Africa, Natal plum grows well in full sunlight in sandy, well-drained soil. The plant is quite drought tolerant and fairly low maintenance. Caution should be used when eating the plums, as the seeds can be toxic.
Native to the tropics of South America, Papaya plant (Carica papaya) is an unusual looking, small tree that is branchless and almost neon green in coloring. Considered by many to be one of the easiest tropical fruits to cultivate at home, Papayas require very little care. Papayas will produce their best fruit if grown in full sunlight, in soil that is fertile, well-drained and moist. The fruit of the plant has a creamy, soft texture and is quite sweet.