Grow your own garden

I find it funny to be writing a blog about growing your own garden. I have a reputation in my house as having a “brown thumb” rather than a “green” one. I have a tendency to kill anything green that I come within 10 feet of.  Even the hardiest of plants have been unable to withstand my care conditions.

Last year a friend told me about her yearly tradition of planting a garden on Mother’s Day. This is something I’ve always wanted to do with my kids, so last year we planted a mini garden in our backyard and attempted to grow some peppers, cherry tomatoes, zucchini, and cabbage.

While not everything grew quite as well as I hoped, it did at least grow. We ended up with a lot of tomatoes, Jalapenos, and some record-sized zucchinis.

I hear from people a lot about the cost of fruits and vegetables and how eating healthy is hard on a budget. Growing your own garden is one way to limit this expense during the summer and fall, a chance to share some quality time with the kids or grandkids, and is even a good way to burn some extra calories (up to 272 calories per hour!). 

This year I’m renting a community garden plot with a friend and am going to try to grow even more – we’ll see how it pans out.

If time or space are factors preventing you from growing your own garden, consider supporting a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) farm. These are community-supported farms in which members buy a share, and are rewarded with a lovely box of freshly grown produce on a regular basis throughout the growing months. 

McHenry county has a number of local CSAs. Click here for more info on CSAs and to find one near you.