Food Gardening Network

Growing Good Food at Home

Sweet Summer Days In the Garden

Here we are in the heart of summer and our gardens couldn’t be happier! I just had my first sweet corn on the cob of the season a few days ago, the tomatoes are coming in bright and full, and the wildflowers are abuzz with honeybees. This is always such an exciting time! 

One thing I love about this time of year, aside from those tasty veggies, is that you can harvest and plant vegetables at the same time. Even as the squash and eggplant are thriving, we can start planting a new batch of beans and get the garden ready to plant for a fall harvest. Let’s not jump ahead too much, though. There’s still a lot of garden goodies headed our way. 

There are some great tips in this issue to help you make the most of your garden this month. Don’t miss the recipes, either! The Cream of Broccoli Soup recipe alone is worth the effort. Although the homemade Mouthwatering Melon Sorbet is WOW! You don’t need any special kitchen tools to make it, either.

Should we head out to the garden to take a look and see what’s in store for the August 2021 issue of Food Gardening Magazine?

In this edition of Food Gardening Magazine, you’ll discover lots of valuable and helpful content and advice, with some of my favorites including:

Gardening with Amanda articles—Amanda MacArthur is one fabulous food gardener! She takes gardening seriously, makes it fun, and delivers some great content—including companion videos to show you, not just tell you, exactly what to do. Check out these three helpful articles, with videos, from Amanda this month:

  • “Planting Vegetables in the Fall: Easy Crops for Now and Later”: Some people think that gardening is only a summer’s game, but not only are there such things as succession crops—which you plant in the same place as your spring crops—but you can also start planting vegetables in the fall that will pop up next spring. It’s never too early to plan when it comes to gardening.
  • “10 Summer Garden Chores for a Happy Garden”: You can’t really skip the watering or weeding, but these 10 garden chores? Technically, you could, but they’re simple tasks that you only need to do once or twice, and you get some tasty benefits out of the deal. Start with pruning your tomatoes – they’re probably looking wild by now – and end by planting your fall garden. More beets and beet greens? Yes, please! Watch the video, read the article, then get out to the garden. Can’t you just taste those delicious vegetables?
  • “How to Build a Pole Bean Teepee Trellis”: One of the fun parts of gardening is having a good excuse to build things, whether that’s a raised bed or a structure for pole beans. You don’t need any fancy tools or skills, either. Amanda breaks it down into seven simple steps. Watch the video to get some gardening inspiration!
  • “How to Throw a Backyard Pizza Party from Your Garden”: Sure, farm-to-table is cool. However, garden-to-table is even cooler! It’s fun, too, especially when it includes pizza. What’s not to love? The only real question here is why Amanda hasn’t invited me over for a garden pizza party yet.

And this issue of Food Gardening Magazine includes details on our three featured foods this month—concurrently with publishing this issue of our magazine, we’re publishing three brand-new gardening guides on broccoli, chives, and melons. As a premium member of Food Gardening Network, you get full access to the magazine and these gardening guides:

I’ve read all three new gardening guides, and I learned so many things about broccoli, chives, and melons. Consider some of these tidbits that I discovered while reading these gardening guides, to get you thinking about what you might want in your garden.

Let’s start with chives. Did you know that the Ancient Romans fed chives to their racehorses? I know that doesn’t have much to do with your garden, but you might also be interested to know that, according to legend, chives can keep evil spirits out of your home.

What’s to say about melons beyond that they’re the perfect summer fruit? I didn’t realize there are more than 800 varietals! And you can grow them on your balcony. 

Of all the vegetables, though, I was surprised to find out that broccoli is officially America’s favorite vegetable. Or maybe I wasn’t surprised given how amazing homegrown broccoli tastes. This “Italian asparagus,” as it was called in a 1724 English gardening dictionary, didn’t catch on in America until the 1920s, and broccoli consumption went up over 940% in just the last 25 years! Go broccoli! 

To help guide you around these three foods and our gardening guides, you’ll find in this edition of Food Gardening Magazine Gardening Guide Close-Ups that focus on broccoli, chives, and melons—these in-depth articles give you valuable tips and advice about these three foods, and you’ll have instant access to the premium gardening guides themselves, too. Be first to read these Gardening Guide Close-Ups, to get a head start on how to grow these foods:

  • “Making the Most of Broccoli Growing Season: From Seed to Soup”: If you haven’t had fresh broccoli right from the garden, you’re missing out. It’s so much better than anything at the grocery store. And right now is the perfect time to grow broccoli for a fall crop! Get all the details now in this article.
  • “10 Tips for Growing Chives (and 5 Reasons You Want To)”: Chives really don’t get the praise they deserve. This easy-going herb attracts pollinators, repels some harmful garden pests, may help lower your cholesterol and reduce plaque buildup in arteries, and they taste great! Ever had Chive Butter? Read all about it in this article. 
  • “Your Quick Start Guide to Growing Melons In Containers”: You read that right! You can grow melons in containers. How large does the container need to be? Do they need a trellis or can you let them sprawl out? Can you really make homemade melon sorbet? Get the answers to all your questions (even the ones you didn’t know you had) in this article.

And then there are the recipes you’ll find in the three gardening guides —here are three of my favorites that are tasty, unique, and easy to make:

  • Creamy Broccoli Walnut Salad—There are SO many ways to enjoy broccoli: roasted, raw, steamed, and stir-fried just to start. But this salad is something else. It’s crunchy, creamy, slightly sweet and tangy, and just a little salty. It’s also super-nutritious. Bonus!
  • Cheese and Chive Frittata—I love frittatas. They’re easy to throw together and they’re delicious for dinner or breakfast. And don’t fret if you don’t have a pan you can put in the broiler. Amanda included an alternative baked version of this recipe, too.
  • Simply Soothing Melon SmoothieWhen you need to cool off on those hot summer days, a refreshing and healthy smoothie is just the thing. This recipe mixes watermelon, cantaloupe, and honeydew melons along with a touch of orange juice and just enough honey to make it heaven in a glass. Plus Norann added a few substitutions and add-ons to the recipe, so you can customize your cool. 

With summer in full swing, I hope you’re harvesting some deliciousness from the garden. 

Happy gardening—and happy eating!

Kim Mateus
Editor & Publisher

P.S. Please enjoy this issue of Food Gardening Magazine, and let me know what you think about it by commenting below with your feedback! Your input is valuable to us and can help us make improvements.



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