Spring's Best Gardening Schedule
by Vitamin Discount Center
Whether you are a gardening guru or a first time planter, we have braved the worst of April showers in hopes to bring you some May flowers and more. With spring in the air it is time to start planting your garden. Gardening is great for stress relief, building better mental health and a terrific way to improve your overall physical well-being. There are so many positive benefits to gardening and all you have to do is harvest them!
Not only is gardening a rewarding experience, it will also be a lot lighter on your pocket than buying fruits and vegetables from your local grocery store. One gardener discovered that they saved over $300 in one year just by growing their own produce.
Furthermore, the quality of produce that is homegrown is sure to exceed even the best grocery store option. With recalls on food happening all of the time due to harmful pesticides and hormones, growing your own fruits and vegetables ensures that it is healthy and free of contaminants. Instead of paying $3 for that one beautiful, perfect tomato at the store, you can plant dozens of them for the same price!
Garden like a Pro
Easier said than done; the number one problem that people run into when starting up their garden is making sure that they are planting in the right season. Depending on where you live, the planting times can vary greatly. There is a great app called SproutRobot that allows you to put in your zip code and it will give you an exact planting chart that is specific to your area and help you manage what to do next after you plant your seedlings. Incredibly accommodating, they will even mail you seeds when it is time to plant them!
If you are low on space or want to try a new unconventional way of gardening, to aid in your planting endeavors we have highlighted some of our favorite ways to do so on page 14.
What Can You Grow Now?
We have put together a list of our favorite seasonal produce that will flourish if you start planting now:
April - July:
Beets: Beets contain powerful nutrient compounds that help protect against heart disease, birth defects and certain cancers, and they have even been rumored to help contribute to extended longevity.
Carrots: The rich antioxidant nutrient, beta-carotene that carrots have contributes to better vision, cardiovascular health and anti-cancer benefits.
Broccoli: Broccoli is great for helping to keep cholesterol levels in check. It is also a great source of vitamin D, vitamin C.
Cantaloupes: Cantaloupe is packed with vitamin A (in the form of carotenoids). Research found that some cantaloupes can reach a beta-carotene content as high as 3,138 micrograms (that is 30 times higher than the beta-carotene content of fresh oranges!).
Cucumbers: Cucumbers contain the three major phytonutrients (cucurbitacins, lignans and flavonoids) which provide valuable antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer benefits.
Eggplants: Research has focused on a specific phytonutrient in eggplant called nasunin which has been suggested to be a powerful brain food.
Lima Beans: Lima beans are an excellent source of cholesterol-lowering fiber and can help prevent blood sugar levels from rising too rapidly after a meal.
Summer Squash: Summer squash features a multitude of benefits including blood sugar, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, prostate health support and anti-cancer benefits.
Sweet Potatoes: Sweet Potatoes provide some SWEET benefits for your health. They are packed with nutrients and contribute to regulating blood sugar levels.
May - June:
Okra: Okra is a good natural source of many important minerals such as iron, calcium, manganese and magnesium. Not to mention, okra is one of the lowest in calories of all vegetables.
Tomatoes: Did you know that tomatoes do not have to be fully ripe to still be an excellent source of nutrients? Tomatoes are packed with lycopene which contributes to bone and heart health.
Watermelons: Alongside tomatoes, watermelon is also packed with lycopene. Watermelons also have an important amino acid, citrulline, stored in them, which can help improve blood flow and other important aspects of cardiovascular health.