Gardening 101: Plant Your Own Gourmet Garden

To help you enjoy fresh home-grown produce this summer, we turned to experts in organic gardening and healthy cooking for advice on selecting the right plants, nurturing them in the ground, and incorporating them into delicious recipes.
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To help you enjoy fresh home-grown produce this summer, we turned to experts in organic gardening and healthy cooking for advice on selecting the right plants, nurturing them in the ground, and incorporating them into delicious recipes.

To help you enjoy fresh home-grown produce this summer, we turned to experts in organic gardening and healthy cooking for advice on selecting the right plants, nurturing them in the ground, and incorporating them into delicious recipes.

What’s better than a meal you’ve cooked? One you’ve grown! A home garden not only saves money, it also reduces your carbon footprint and, when eaten fresh, delivers more nutrients. For instance, tomatoes, lettuce, and carrots can lose up to 7o percent of their vitamin C from harvest to restaurant, finds one study from Brazil. Avoid chemical pesticides and you’ll likely reap even more nutritional benefit: Organically grown eggplant has more calcium, potassium, and magnesium than its conventional counterpart, according to a study in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, while organic tomatoes have more vitamin C and carotenoids than nonorganic ones, finds research from France.

To help you plant a tasty garden, including Ayurvedic ingredients to balance your dosha, we tapped The Ayurvedic Institute and experts at Lake Austin Spa Resort in Texas, where much of the food is grown organically by director of flora and fauna Trisha Shirey, author of Vegetable Gardening in the Southwest. Then, use your harvest in the recipes, developed by the resort’s executive chef Stéphane Beaucamp, whose philosophy is simple—eat fresh, real, seasonal food. This summer’s forecast: delicious, healthy, and soothing.

See also Home Gardening: How to Grow Your Own Tea