The classification of vegetables and other vegetables is done according to the edible part of the plant.
This part may be underground, as in the case of roots, tubers and bulbs; it can be above the ground, such as stems, leaves and flowers, and in some vegetables the edible part is the fruits and seeds.
Stalk or stem vegetables
In these vegetables, the edible part of the plant is the stem, which always grows above the ground, unlike the roots. Not all plants have an edible stem.
Some of the most well-known stalk vegetables are asparagus, celery, heart of palm and fennel.
Edible leafy plants fall into this category. The leaves can be separated or very compact, like cabbage. Some of these vegetables need to be cooked before they are ready to eat, but they can sometimes be eaten raw.
Some examples are spinach, cabbage, watercress, lettuce, brussels sprouts, chard, chicory and mustard leaves.
Some plants have flowers and buds that can be used in our food. This type of vegetable is seasonal and is found in certain seasons.
Some examples of flowers are cauliflower, broccoli and artichoke.
This is the part of the plant that grows just below the ground, and is between the root and the stem. Bulb vegetables are usually layered, like onions, and have a strong flavor.
Some examples are onions, garlic and saffron.
This category includes legumes that are used as food, which are sometimes peeled, like peas, and sometimes not, like beans. Plants that are not legumes and produce pods also fall into this category.
They usually grow above the ground, but in some cases they can grow underground, like peanuts.
Some examples are beans, peas, licorice, peanuts and soy.
This category includes plants whose roots are edible and are used as vegetables.
Some examples of root vegetables are beets, carrots, turnips and radishes.
Tubers are a stem, usually rounded, that some plants develop under the ground, and that act as a nutrient reserve.
Although the potato is the most well-known tuber, other examples in this category are cassava, sweet potatoes and yams.
The plants from which fruits are used as vegetables are classified in this category. The pulp is the main edible part, and they can be eaten with seeds and peels. Plants that carry sweet and fleshy fruits do not fall into this group.
Some examples are tomatoes, eggplant, peppers, chayote, jiló, okra, cucumber and pumpkin.