Gardening is not just for outdoor enthusiasts who enjoy spending hours digging holes and pulling up weeds. Anyone can start a garden, and it does not require a large plot of land depending on the type of plants. It does not take many supplies to create and maintain a garden. The most essential items are seeds, fertilizer, shovel, spade, and a garden hose. A utility sink faucet would be handy to clean things off and keep dirt in another area rather than the main kitchen where you prepare food. Have you planned your garden and things you can make with it?
Many people consider gardening as a hobby, but it offers many health and psychological benefits. It can also be a money-making opportunity for persons who will be retiring as they have a lot of spare time on their hands. Persons who engage in gardening have seen an increase in their self-esteem and it is also a great way to reduce stress. Working in the garden and eating organic produce can contribute towards a healthy lifestyle as it helps your body fight diseases. Gardening also benefits the environment by reducing the number of pesticides and organic fertilizers released into the atmosphere and ground. Whether it is vegetables, fruits or herbs, there are many uses for your garden’s bounty. Here are seven things you can make from your garden:
Vegetable and Fruit Preserves
The preservation of fruits and vegetables has been around for many years and revolutionized the way we eat in society. Making your preserves ensures that you can enjoy your fruits and vegetables all year round. It also allows you to be creative as the flavor combinations are endless. Preserves can be used in many recipes, such as this summer peach and chicken salad that requires sweet pickle relish.
Donate to a Local Orphanage or Homeless Shelter
Helping others is rewarding because not only are you making a positive impact in your community and family, but it ensures that many of these institutions can continue providing for the needy. Making and donating care packages filled with organic fruits and vegetables is one way to remove poverty from the world. Before donating, identify if the organization accepts fresh produce.
Store Them for a Rainy Day
Freezing is one way to store fresh produce as it slows down spoilage and retains the nutrient content of many fruits and vegetables to be enjoyed when they are out of season.
DIY Bouquets/Room Décor
Fresh cut flowers are a great way to add life to any room and boost your mood. The knowledge of knowing these flowers came from your garden is an added plus. The vibrant colors and aroma will brighten anyone’s mood, and the more plants or flowers in the home will guarantee cleaner air. A bouquet is an excellent gift for any occasion, and flowers from your garden are that added touch that will make it more memorable.
Herb-infused oils can be made by combining dry or fresh herbs like thyme, basil, and rosemary and vegetable oils like sunflower, coconut, and jojoba oils. These oils can be used for a myriad of purposes such as:
- Skincare / Massage Oils
- Hair Care
- Pain Relief
Making herb-infused oils is a great way to occupy your time, and they also have a long shelf life depending on the type of oil used and how it is stored.
Sell Produce to Local Grocery Stores or From Your Front Yard
If making preserves is not your speed and you do not have the time to make herb-infused oils, you can sell your surplus produce to your local grocery store or your next-door neighbors.
Another option is to exchange fruits and vegetables or other items with other people. Mowing the lawn for a basket of garden-fresh produce is one way to get them off your hands.
There may come a time when you may not be able to consume all the fresh produce that comes from your garden. Organic produce can start to go rancid and become inedible if not used quickly. One way to rectify this issue is to recycling organic material into humus-rich soil for future crops.