In preparation for planting my vegetable garden, I picked up More Food From Small Spaces by Margaret Park from the library. I have two small raised beds that I normally plant 5 or 6 different veggies in, but they did not all fair well last year. So, I am doing some research on companion planting, vertical gardens, and proper spacing of plants to see if I can be more successful this year. This book has been very helpful. I bought my first seeds the other day and am looking forward to growing tomatoes, cucumbers, bell peppers, lettuce, and corn. I have not had the best experience in growing corn, but the kids and I love to see the tall stalks growing in the garden. It is ornamental and makes me smile, so I will keep trying. I did harvest a few delicious cobs that I used in making salsa and other salads, so it wasn’t a total waste.
I love having a small garden. Two raised garden beds were more than plenty for our family of four. We grew corn, green peppers, cucumbers, two types of tomatoes, and carrots. We had so many tomatoes that we gave bags and bags away to friends and neighbors. It brings me joy to see it grow and to see the kids enjoying picking and cooking with our fresh ingredients. Here is the summation of our first attempt to make our own pasta sauce:
We used this sauce to make baked ziti, and it was so delicious. It does take a lot of work and many tomatoes to make one batch, but I think my family appreciated the effort when they tasted it. Here is a link to a detailed recipe I used to guide our process. I am sad that the summer is winding down and our garden is needing to be cleared out for next year. I am thankful to have a freezer full of cut up peppers, corn, and blueberries to enjoy all winter. The sowing isn’t always easy, but it sure does pay off when you reap the benefits!