Eating healthy can be a struggle at times, especially when it comes to selecting and even maintaining the fresh produce you buy at the store. Before you can even get a recipe together, the tomatoes you bought have liquified and the herbs you picked out have wilted. So here’s fruit and vegetable gardening made easy!
Luckily, there are plenty of fruits and vegetables you can grow your own home or small garden that are simple to manage and even tastier to eat! Here are seven delectable vegetables and fruits you’ve got to try growing yourself.
Lemons are an easy citrus fruit to grow if you live in an area with a good amount of sunlight and humidity. You can grow a lemon tree from a single lemon seed, however, if you want your plant to bear fruit quicker, then planting a dwarf lemon tree from a nursery is your best bet.
- Plant your dwarf lemon tree in a medium-sized plastic or clay pot, just big enough for the ball of roots at the bottom to grow slightly outward.
- Make sure your pot has plenty of holes and a drainage dish at the bottom of it too.
- Keep your lemon tree in citrus-appropriate soil and set your pot down either in a spot in your yard that gets the most sun or by a sunny window inside your home.
That’s right, you can grow lemons indoors too!
Now you just need to water your baby plant every other day for its first two weeks, and then tone it down to about twice a week. If your plant is in your yard and it rains significantly, then cut down on the watering for that week. Just keep it going and within six to nine months, your new tree should spring up fresh, ripe lemons.
Of course, it’s going to take time for your tree to be at growing capacity but once it gets there, you can whip up a tasty lemon butter sauce for chicken or a classic lemonade with lemons from your own tree!
Tomatoes play an integral part in many delicious dishes and now you can have a ton on hand in your home. The great thing about tomatoes is that you don’t necessarily have to live in a warm climate to grow them. There are both summer and winter varieties of tomato plants, so even if you live in a cooler climate, you can grow them.
Or if you want to grow them indoors, then go for the winter variety. If you want to grow multiple tomato plants (which we recommend to get the most yield), use a 12-inch pot so they have space to grow.
- Plant your tomato seeds in some starting mix soil in your pot and make sure there are drainage holes at the bottom.
- Water your plants enough so that the soil stays moist but not too wet.
- Once your tomato plant reaches three inches tall, transfer it to normal potting soil and begin to add fertilizer of your choice.
- If you do a winter variety indoors, then keep your pot in a moderately warm spot by the window.
Summer varieties thrive outside in a small garden, so give them plenty of sunlight. The warmer the environment, the faster the tomatoes will grow! Plant one or two more new seeds every two weeks to keep those plump tomatoes coming!
Cool and crunchy, cucumbers are summer’s favorite healthy treat. Cucumbers keep you feeling refreshed for their coolness and moisture. Growing them in your small garden or small vessel should be just as cool and easy with the right care. Bush varieties of cucumbers are the most ideal because they yield a lot of cucumbers even within a smaller growing area. Deep wooden or plastic containers are perfect for growing cucumbers.
- So fill a container or your garden with rich soil and plant cucumber seeds down and water them regularly.
- The cucumbers sprout generously, so you could end up with more than you wanted.
- Whenever the soil feels stiff, water your cucumbers liberally.
As long as you’re vigilant of your cucumber bush’s health, you should come out with juicy cucumbers. They’ll be perfect for a salad or even a face mask!
Need some leavy greens that won’t wilt instantly? Arugula is by far one of the most flavorful greens to have in your salad or pasta and they’re easy to grow by yourself.
- Get a planter box and fill it with rich potting soil, then sprinkle a few of your seeds four inches apart into the box and pat them down gently.
- Once they start to sprout, weed out the less healthy shoots to keep the plant well regulated.
- Water regularly and keep the soil moist. Soon you’ll have lush leaves of arugula growing from your own planter box!
- Harvest the biggest, greenest of the bunch and be watchful of the growth.
Add extra nutrients if necessary but otherwise grab some of those spicy leaves and make fresh and healthy salads within minutes of picking.
The perfect addition to a pot pie filling or a crunchy afternoon snack, carrots are full of health benefits like potassium and beta carotene. Grow these orange delights in a pot, window box or your small garden outside.
- If you use a pot or window box, be sure there are drainage holes in it and fill the pot with humus-rich potting soil.
- Plant carrot seeds at least six inches apart into the soil. Also, make sure there’s plenty of room in your vessel for the carrots to grow underneath!
- Make sure your carrot pot gets lots of sunlight and again, keep the soil moist but not overly soaked.
Germination should start kicking in within three weeks. You’ll know the carrots are ready for picking when you can see them begin to poke out from the ground. Smaller varieties of carrots are perfect for growing in pots near and in house. If you have a liberal amount of garden space, then complete the same instructions in your garden and feel free to grow larger carrots. There will be plenty then to make some mean carrot cake!
Oregano and other fresh herbs
All these savory veggie dishes are nothing without some fresh herbs to lend some serious flavor. Herbs are so important for cooking, but they’re also the easiest of plants to grow indoors, so consider including them in your vegetable gardening plan. Herbs thrive at room temperature, which makes them easy to maintain inside.
- To get your own in-kitchen herb garden started, use small pots, preferably plastic or glazed. Of course, make sure they have drainage holes and a drainage dish.
- Use rich potting soil and fill the pots up, followed by your herb plant (in this case oregano).
- Only have the main roots buried and keep the rest of the plant perked up above the soil. Set your pots by a window to catch some sun, but, again, they don’t need really hot temperatures to grow.
As if it couldn’t get easier, herb plants don’t need such frequent watering either. Water them as needed when the soil starts to feel a little dry. The hardest part is just making sure you feed your herb plants rich plant food every two weeks to keep the sprigs of yummy leaves growing. Make sure to grow herbs with similar needs together. Oregano grows best with herbs like parsley, sage, and thyme.
Good ol’ cousin of the cucumber, the zucchini is another vegetable that really screams summer taste. Zucchinis are perfect to grow in warm climates since they do well in temperatures above 60 degrees Fahrenheit.
- To plant zucchinis, create little mounds in your garden by scraping soil upward to make small 6 to 12-inch hills.
- Have each mound at least a few feet apart to give the plants space to grow.
- Make one-inch deep holes into the hills and plant 2-3 zucchini seeds in each hill.
- When your seeds germinate, start mulching your zucchini garden.
- This keeps the moisture needed to grow them trapped in the soil.
- Water them twice a week and within 50 days, you should see fully-grown zucchinis to pick and eat.
Zucchinis are great to have on hand for their tender texture in curries and for zucchini pasta!
Fruit and vegetable gardening comes with its set of responsibilities, but it’s definitely worth the effort. You get to grow and eat produce without any environmentally-harmful substances introduced to the growing process.
You don’t have to go shop for as many vegetables as much when they’re growing right at home. Producing your own food via fruit and vegetable gardening promotes a more sustainable lifestyle, where we only take as much as we need. No worrying about spoiling veggies and fruits and waste contribution here.
If you’re ever running into trouble with your plants while vegetable gardening, feel free to visit your closest plant nursery. Get the full scope of growing fresh foods so that you can expand your garden even more.