Healthy Produce

Healthy Produce

Today I am going to continue our adventure in healthy eating. I mentioned getting organic produce at farmer’s markets and roadside stands were good places to start. To find a farmer’s market near you, try entering your location at Local Harvest. They have a pretty extensive listing for every state.

tomatoes-929234_640The other way to make sure you are getting the best organic produce is to grow it yourself. Check out my Pinterest link for a number of good articles on gardening. I have two gardening boards; one for general gardening and another for container gardening.

If you don’t have a large area to grow your own produce, there are a number of options. If you have a small yard, raised bed gardening might be a good solution for you. My friend Linda Loosli has some wonderful articles on raised gardens you might find useful. Square foot gardening is another way to maximize your available space. Square foot gardens may be laid out directly on the ground or in raised beds. My Square Foot Garden has some simple, straight forward, information on getting started.

broccoli-315593_640Even if you live in an apartment, you still have some gardening options. Although I have a pretty big yard, where I live we have a pretty short growing season, so I do a lot of container gardening. Container gardening is great for apartment dwellers, as well as for those of us living in less than ideal outdoor gardening environments. One of my favorite containers is the vertical Mr. Stacky Strawberry Planter Pot. It holds 20+ plants and I use them mostly for herbs.

Another form of container gardening is hydroponics. Hydroponic gardening isn’t difficult or mysterious and actually takes less maintenance than potted plants. I start my seed in a starting tray with rockwool cubes. I use General Hydroponics WaterFarms for larger plants and I have a couple of Hydrofarm Hydroponic Megagarden Systems for smaller plants. The main maintenance in hydroponics is adding nutrient solution regularly and water as needed.

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Now that we’ve discussed gardening, we need seed to grow. I always opt for open pollinated non-GMO seed. One of the most fun ways I’ve found for acquiring seed is through the Seeds of the Month Club. Current club membership is about $64.00 for two years (you can purchase shorter terms for less), including shipping. The month you join, you receive eight seed packets and every month thereafter you receive four seed packets. You don’t choose what they send, so it’s a surprise every month. I haven’t been disappointed with anything they’ve sent in the five months since I joined and the seeds have had great germination rates. When you join, you can also purchase any seed or gardening products from the online store at a 25% discount. Another plus is, once you join, you can give your friends and family a referral link that will extend your membership by the same amount of time anyone you refer signs up for. So, if you join using my link, they will extend my membership for the length of time you select. Then, you can pass on your referral link for the same.

Well, I’m going to keep this short and sweet, this time. I hope this and my last post have encouraged you to start a journey towards your best health. We’ll look at other topics along this line in the future. In my next post we will start looking at food storage. Until then, eat healthy!

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