5 Must-Have Plants for Your Home Garden - PIH Health - Whittier, CA

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Healthy Living Online

Published on July 09, 2015

Bell peppers growing in a garden

5 Must-Have Plants for Your Home Garden

Planting a home garden adds flavor to your table while reducing your grocery bill

Bell peppers growning in a garden

The most nutritious and delicious produce is home-grown. If you aren’t sure what to plant and when to plant it, these tips can help, starting with these 5 home garden staples.

  1. Tomatoes: Tomatoes are the perfect staple for any home garden. You can eat the fruit of the plant raw in the summer months or make it into a sauce and freeze for the winter. If you choose to plant your tomatoes from seeds, start indoors in early April. You can transplant your starters or store-bought transplants in late April to mid-May. Be sure to give them plenty of sunlight and water.
  2. Cucumbers: These are great warm weather plants, and they can grow in any amount of space because, like tomatoes, they can climb. Cucumbers grow in soil that is at least 65°F, so plant them no earlier than mid- to late April based on your region.
  3. Zucchini: This is a perfect mid-summer vegetable that’s great for grilling. This squash variety likes warm soil, so plant in early to mid-summer for best results. You can plant the seeds directly into the ground at one inch deep and two to three feet apart, making it an easy planting project.
  4. Bell Peppers: This sweet variety of pepper makes for a great staple in any home garden due to its strong resistance to pests. Bell peppers love warm soil (above 70°F). It is best to start seeds indoors in early spring and plant seedlings outside in late spring to early summer, as they are very sensitive to cold weather.
  5. Basil: This herb makes a perfect addition to any summer pasta, pizza or tomato dish and is great for making pesto and salad dressings. Basil is a low-maintenance plant that can be grown in the ground or in a pot. Plant basil in late April and make sure it gets plenty of sunlight.

The information in Healthy Living Online is for educational purposes only.  It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice.  The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation, or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan.

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