It may be freezing cold now, but before you know it, winter’s gloom will melt away, and the warmth of the springtime sun will be back in its full glory. If you’re itching to get a head start on the beautiful new beginnings that happen with the onset of spring, there’s no better way than to begin planning for a garden.
Gardening doesn’t have to be hard. Whether you have a full yard or an apartment balcony, you can grow a beautiful garden anywhere there’s dirt, sun, and a little bit of effort. If you’re unsure about having enough space, or afraid your thumb may not be green enough, no problem. We’ve rounded up four easy-to-grow must-haves to help you enjoy the bounty of a super-simple garden.
Ask Dr. Bob and Claire how they are enjoying having an indoor RISE garden!
We tend to think of parsley as a garnish, and don't use it as much as we should. However, this herb does much more than decorate a beautiful meal. First, it's easy to grow, and you can't hardly kill it, even through the winter! Parsley gives a super fresh taste to any salad, and also contains antioxidants and bioflavanoids that combat inflammation throughout the body.
Chives are a member of the onion family and have beautiful and edible flowers. Plus, herbal folklore says that hanging bunches of chives in your home will keep diseases far, far away.
Chives are often touted as the easiest plant to grow for any gardener. They can grow in a pot on your windowsill, as part of your outdoor landscape, or in a random spot of dirt. But be forewarned – chives can easily take over your garden. If they do, that’s okay. They’re easy enough to dig up and move to another spot.
Whether in a summertime salad or a hearty pesto, basil is a highly versatile, flavor-packed herb. Sweet basil is linked to a number of health benefits, one of which is normalizing high blood pressure. Holy basil, another popular variety, can also help lower your blood sugar and cholesterol, reduce joint pain, and protect against infection.
When it comes to planting, save yourself the headache of growing it from seed and grab a small plant from a nursery or your grocery store. Basil grows easily and amazingly well in pots, so make sure to choose one that’s 12” deep, and keep the soil moistened and well-drained.
Lettuce is a household staple that comes in many varieties. It’s full of important nutrients, such as fiber, potassium, and vitamins A, C, and K. It comes in lots of colors, ranging from dark green to yellow, and some even have reddish hues.
But there’s a little-known fact about lettuce: you can grow lettuce indoors year-round! Just make sure you have enough sunlight, and you can grow it right on your windowsill or underneath grow lights. Lettuce is super easy to plant, so growing it from seed is just fine. If you’re planting indoors, look for loose-leaf varieties rather than head lettuces, which are more challenging to grow inside.
It’s Never Too Late to Garden
Much like how a good spring cleaning will freshen up your house, having a few edible plants growing nearby can encourage cooking creativity and boost your confidence. You don’t have to have acres of land or be a master gardener either. Starting off with a few of the most common and easiest to grow plants is an exciting way to get your garden off to a good start.
The time to plan is now. Start thinking through how you want your garden to look and get ready for some delicious discoveries!