Burpee Gardening 101

Everybody has that other thing, you know, that thing that you totally could have done but didn’t end up doing. Mine is gardening, and in many ways it’s my dream job. In fact, my first job was at a flower nursery and I have always loved plants and planting thanks to many afternoons gardening with my dad. I always find it refreshing and therapeutic to be around and in God’s creation. 

I once thought that I needed acres and acres of land to grow vegetables. But that is clearly not the case. If New Yorkers can grow their veggies on rooftops, I was sure I could manage a decent garden in sunny California. With a few good pots, rich organic soil, some sun, and our garden was started.

One thing I really wanted as I put together our garden were solid, healthy, veggie and herb plants. It didn’t take long to find Burpee Plants, a collection of the leading garden vegetables, herbs and flowers available at your favorite local garden retailer. They offer a huge variety of options, including plants for small spaces, foodies, and even organic. As you know, healthy plants grow healthy vegetables.

What we planted

“Sriracha Hot Pepper” with dark green fruit

“Basket of fire” hot pepper

Sweet Thai Basil

Rutgers DMR Obsession Basil

Boost Tasti-Wee Small Fruited Tomato

Jalapeno Sweet Poppers Sweet pepper

Ristra Cayenne II Hot Pepper (um, yes, we like our peppers)

Sweet Thang Cabbage

Sweet Slaw Cabbage.

All of the above vegetables are from Burpee! Just yesterday, Atalie picked a hot pepper from our container garden. Oh, the excitement in the house! All of a sudden, 4 kids were fighting over who was going to eat it. I had to remind them, peppers are hot!

1 month later . . .

5 Reasons why you should plant a Burpee vegetable garden

1. Vegetables grown in your garden will often have more nutrients than those from the store that often need to be picked early.

2. It helps you eat more veggies! When you’re so involved in the growing of your food, you’ll definitely want to eat it. 

3. Gardening is easy and fun, not intimidating. It’s a relaxing, healthy activity that gets the entire family involved.

4. There is nothing quite like eating fresh, ripe veggies in your salsas and dinners. 

5. Did you know that gardening is actually proven to combat stress and anxiety? (I knew there was a reason I loved it so much!) 

If these aren’t reasons enough, here are two of my favorite things to make with our Burpee garden haul. 

Recipes: Tomato Salsa

3 cups chopped tomatoes

1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper

1 cup onion, diced

1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro

2 T fresh lime juice

1 fresh jalapeno pepper, chopped (including seeds)

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

Stir the tomatoes, green bell pepper, onion, cilantro, lime juice, jalapeno pepper, cumin, salt, and pepper in a bowl. Serve.

Spinach Basil Pesto

1 1/2 cups spinach leaves

3/4 cup basil leaves

1/2 cup toasted pine nuts

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese (more or less to taste)

4 cloves garlic, peeled and quartered

3/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon lemon zest

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

Blend the spinach, basil, pine nuts, Parmesan cheese, garlic, salt, pepper, lemon juice, lemon zest, and 2 tablespoons olive oil in a food processor until nearly smooth, scraping the sides of the bowl with a spatula as necessary. Drizzle the remaining olive oil into the mixture while processing until smooth.

Thank you Burpee Plants for sponsoring this post! All opinions are my own. For more, follow the Burpee blog!