By Tiffany Selvey, master gardener and mama of 1
It’s been a slow, leisurely start to the gardening season this year. Many years we jump right from winter into the heat of summer, but the last few months have been cool and wet, a much needed relief from the drought last year.
Because of the slow start this year, there’s still plenty of time to start growing your own vegetables. Garden centers and farm supply stores are still well stocked with all the summer veggies we want gracing our tables this season.
Starting a garden doesn’t have to be fussy. Even a few pretty edibles in containers by the back door will provide your family with nutrients and knowledge, two things of which we rarely get enough.
Consider getting a few large planters to fill with edibles to adorn your porch or patio, at least two feet in diameter. Fill each pot with any high quality, organic potting soil, about an inch of compost, and 3 plants, one small, one medium, and one large. Here are a few ideas:
- Staked or trellised cucumber
- Sweet or hot pepper
- Trellised green beans
- Winter squashes such as acorn or spaghetti (These will vine over the outside of the planter, so add these to an area with space to spread out.)
- Leaf lettuce
Wouldn’t it be nice to step out the back door to harvest fresh herbs for your salsa? Or grab a few cherry tomatoes for a snack on the way inside from playing? Planting in containers offers the convenience of the grocery store with the peace of mind that comes from knowing from where your food was grown.
Tiffany Selvey is a Master Gardener who writes about her passion for growing, cooking, and living naturally at www.Songbird-Gardens.com. When she’s not elbow deep in soil, she enjoys raising a very active son, laughing with her husband, and wrangling their pets. Follow Tiffany’s gardening adventures on facebook and on twitter.