The ongoing arrival of seed catalogs is reminding me that no matter how cold it is outside, now’s the time to start planning the garden. This week’s Twice as Tasty column for the Flathead Beacon has a decidedly local spin, mentioning local sources for seed and local farms offering community-supported agriculture (CSA) shares. If you live outside the area, take these as reminders to look out your own back door for local seed and produce resources before they sell out. According to Axiom’s 2022 garden survey, 62% of respondents plan to plant more this year.
Narrowing down the choices of what to plant can be as challenging as finding time to tend the garden all season. Read on to find out how I try to resist planting more than I can manage.
Tips & Tricks
The options for your garden can be so overwhelming you end up doing too much or being afraid to start. The solution I offer in my column is to work backward by asking, What do I want to eat, and when do I want to eat it?
In my garden-planning workshops, we discuss what to plant—and what to skip—by considering the fruits and vegetables you buy, how you buy them, and where you store them. There’s no point in growing a row of Swiss chard, yellow wax beans, or kale if it isn’t a hit at the dinner table. You can start thinking about these ideas by reading this blog post.
Twice as Tasty
This week’s column mentions some of the must-haves on my garden list, for both fresh eating and storage. Here are some of my garden staples and the recipes I use them in. You can find more ideas in the blog’s recipe index.
- Arugula: Arugula–Asparagus Salad and Penne with Wilted Arugula
- Beets: Roasted and Smoked Beets and Orange and Golden Beets with Roasted Garlic in The Complete Guide to Pickling
- Carrots: Cultured Curtido (Cabbage Slaw) and Taqueria Carrots in The Complete Guide to Pickling
- Corn: Corn Kernel–Sage Muffins and Corn, Bean, and Pepper Salsa
- Pickling cucumbers: Smoky Full-Sour Pickles and Honeyed Bread-and-Butter Chips in The Complete Guide to Pickling
- Snap beans: Three-Bean Salad
Another of my easy-to-grow, garden-fresh favorites is spinach. You can find the recipe for Herbed Spinach Frittata, which you can make now with store-bought greens and dried seasonings but is particularly delicious with homegrown spinach and herbs, in my latest piece for Fifth Season Fresh.
Want more Twice as Tasty recipes? Get my books! Click here to order a personally signed, packaged, and shipped copy of The Complete Guide to Pickling directly from me. I also share tasty ways to use pickles in The Pickled Picnic, a digital collection in an easy-to-read PDF format; it’s only available here.