When I was growing up, my Dad always had a garden. I don't remember a single year when he didn't have at least a couple of tomato plants and some green onions, and we even had a year of two when broccoli, corn and watermelons made an appearance in our back yard. I still think he grew the biggest Beefsteak tomatoes the Midwest has ever seen.
So, it must be in my genes that every spring I have this urge to plant something. In Florida, the first tomato plants of the season appear in our local garden center in early February, and I have to force myself to wait just a little longer to buy them, until the last cold snap has moved on, in favor of warmer temperatures. Then the fun begins.
This year I wanted lots of basil to make homemade pesto, so I started my plants from seeds. If you've never seen basil seeds, they are extremely small, and it's nearly impossible to count out just 2 or 3 to each pot. So I planted this packet of seeds, and I what I thought would be about 10 basil plants turned into 25! As a result, not only will we be making lots of pesto, and freezing the basil in cubes, but several of my husband's coworkers will be receiving basil plants of their own..lol.
Other goodies in our kitchen garden this year include a jalapeno pepper and a poblano pepper plant, lots of green onions, chives and parsley, along with cherry tomatoes and full sized tomatoes.
Many people think you need a lot of space for a garden, but all of the items above are growing beautifully in pots, with the exception of the large tomato plants, and they don't take up very much room.
If you've never tried to grow your own herbs or vegetables, there is still time this season to pick up a few plants at your local garden store. Gardening is also a great project for kids. Not only will they enjoy watching the plants grow, they will be excited to help decide how to use the harvest.
Tomatoes, both the full size and the cherry tomatoes can be used in salsa or salads, and they are yummy on pizza. Fresh herbs like basil, oregano or chives can be added to salad dressings and many dishes, and they are all very easy to grow.
Thanks for visiting my Kitchen Garden and check back soon. We have lots of great recipes coming up using this years harvest. Happy Gardening!