Got a lot of blackberries? Then check out this recipe for Blackberry Mojito Fruit Leather.

I'm not a huge fan of fruit leathers, but this turned out super good! And, really, you can't go wrong with blackberries, mint and rum.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Top 5 favorite foods to grow

Since I've been busy getting some vegetable starts in the ground for this summer's bounty, I wanted to list the top 5 things I like to grow, why I grow them and add some of the potential problems with them.

1. Garlic - They are super easy, virtually pest resistant, store well and the resulting enjoyment is high. I just need to remember to put them in the ground before Halloween or all bets are off.

2. Pumpkins - Another easy one that produces far more in the end compared to the effort I put in. This year we're growing a ton of Cinderella pumpkins that we'll process and freeze. The only possible issue is if we leave them out too long and they are subjected to frost and turn into squishy monsters.

3. Lettuce - We eat a lot of it and, if we can keep the slugs and other critters away, it grows well. The heat of summer can cause them to bolt, so they are more of a spring and fall sort of crop unless I get a slo bolt kind.

4. Italian flat leaf parsley - This grows exceedingly well in our area, much more so than any other annual herb. There are no downfalls to this plant except for, maybe, forgetting to plant the damn thing. It can go to seed quickly, but that just means I need to do some succession planting.

5. Strawberries - Even though we don't exactly have the space set up for a huge crop, eating fresh strawberries straight out of the backyard just can't be beat, no matter what.

What are your favorite top 5 foods to grow?

24 comments:

Green Bean said...

Hmm, garlic huh? That's one I've never grown! I'll have to give it a try. I second the pumpkins, also love peas, tomatoes and borage.

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Fragmentary Green said...

I like mint-I pour out a stale waterbottle on it once in a while and it's happy. Nothing beats a home-grown tomato, and I eat so much zucchini that not having it this year is going to be painful.

Anna M said...

We're going to moving and starting our garden in an urban rather than rural setting. Our plan for strawberries is vertical growing. I've seen several variations on this from grow pots that are stacked (but plastic), PVC pipe with holes and pallets (which I like the best). I'm thinking we might build a pallet wall and grow strawberries on both sides.

Kate said...

I started to answer your question here in you comment section, but decided to turn it into a full on post of my own. Garden favorites meme?

http://livingthefrugallife.blogspot.com/2011/05/five-garden-favorites.html

Donna said...

My top 5 would be tomatoes, asparagus, potatoes, squash, and my herbs

Accidental Prepper said...

My favourite things to grow are onions, carrots, potatoes, beans and tomatoes, your basic ingredients for comfort foods.

Rosa said...

Same, except I can't grow pumpkins, not enough sun.

Also: raspberries, cilantro, and sage, for easy growing things we eat a lot of.

And tomatillos and broccoli raab, because they are expensive and rare at the farmer's market & grocery, but guaranteed producers in my back yard.

Rachel said...

What?! I have to pick just 5? No fair! OK, I guess I'll have to pick:
Winter Squash/Pumpkins - For some unknown reason I'm completely OBSESSED with them even though we really don't eat them that often.
Potatoes - Super easy to grow and it's a treasure hunt when you're harvesting.
Tomatoes - Love to grow them. Hate them raw. Go figure.
Garlic/onions - we use a ton of them and are easy to grow...for the most part.
Asparagus - seriously best thing ever when it's right out of the garden.

L said...

HOT PEPPERS!
Tomatoes
Salad Greens
Basil
Braising Greens

Also, squash, but the damn squash bugs are so entrenched I'm giving it a season's rest to discourage them.

Peak Oil Hausfrau said...

Peaches, kale, okra, garlic, parsley. Those are the easiest and highest-yielding ones, anyway! Although I hope my apples will finally kick in this year - and it's my first year to try potatoes and sweet potatoes, so those may get added to the list.

De in D.C. said...

Tomatoes, Swiss Chard, Basil, Thyme and Tomatillas. All of these are easy and reliable in my low-light, heavy clay yard.

I've never been able to grow carrots, potatoes are spotty, eggplant does OK but I hate it, okra is a bust (this makes me cry, because I love it so), and any of the smaller greens like lettuce and spinach just become slug fodder.

Adrienne said...

I only have a top three so far in my container garden, that I both love to eat and have had success growing:
1. Tomatoes (specifically, cherry tomatoes)
2. Lettuces
3. Chard

I especially love the lettuces and chard b/c I get an early summer crop *and* a fall crop.
My spinach was a flop last year but looks good so far this year.

Melinda said...

Rhubarb. Because it's so easy and weird.
Beans because they give back to the soil and produce a lot of food.
Strawberries, for the same reasons you list.
Blueberries. They rock.
Spicy mesclun mix. A salad bowl in your garden. Awesome.

I used to have garlic on the list, but last year there was an epidemic of garlic rust in the whole p-patch. Everyone lost their garlic. It really sucked and made me sad. So I can't plant it for a while. :(

Aimee said...

I have to plant hard to kill stuff like radishes and snap peas - luckily these are also among my very favorites. Cherry tomatoes, summer squash, and sweet corn! There!

equa yona(Big Bear) said...

Blueberries, onions, garlic, basil,cilantro and cherry tomatoes.
I used to have some swell pear trees but I didn't really grow them-they just grew.

Anonymous said...

My favourites to grow and to eat are, in no particular order - garden peas, tomatoes, zucchini, raspberries and scarlet runner beans. Every year I wait impatiently for the first fresh taste from my garden. Loretta

Heather said...

My faves are beans, strawberries, basil, tomatoes and cilantro. My hubs is QUITE the salsa maker!

Magic and Mayhem said...

We have tons of strawberries but they're pretty wimpy when it comes to production and we have to race the birds for them.

My favorites to grow are lemon verbena (a MUST -- the most heavenly scent on earth), cilantro, parsley, rainbow swiss chard, heirloom tomatoes (especially yellows and grapes), raspberries and blackberries and rhubarb. All of those are super simple for me to keep alive and tasty. Most of them come up year after year in our MN garden (other than the tomatoes, LV and chard), which makes them even more likable to me. :)

Hug a tree with me said...

I have never thought about growing garlic but now I am inspired to do so:) I am your newest fan, check me out at http://hugatreewithme2.blogspot.com whenever you can

Alicia@ eco friendly homemaking said...

Oh I agree we love tomatoes and we always like to grow squash, eggplant, cucumbers and lots of herbs.I am new to your blog and am so very glad that I found it! I have been reading over some of your posts and am looking so very forward to reading more.

Rachel said...

I would love to try to grow these! I love your blog title! One friend told me ignorance is bliss (until you know the truth!) I really enjoy your blog! btw, I started a new link up for sharing healthy ideas, suggestions, going "green" tips, etc. and I hope you and anyone else interested will join me next Wednesday! (Healthy 2day Wednesdays) Have a great weekend!

Dmarie said...

top 5 to cook fresh from garden (Hubby grows):
asparagus, zucchini, sweet potatoes, kale, spinach
**Number one veggie I wish we could grow here: AVOCADOS! Avocados are proof that money really does grow on trees. oh, we should all be so lucky!

angela said...

parsley is growing like crazy here too & we're trying to find some good uses for it. what do you like to do with all of yours?
we love growing lettuce, spinach, cherry tomatoes, sweet peppers & kale. i would say squash, but the battle with the squash bug is endless. we keep trying though!

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