STORAGEWORKS - August 7 2022

3 Affordable and Edible Plants That Are Easy to Grow

Want some (almost) free food?
Home decorated with plants

We need plants not only for food, but also because they have other, less obvious, benefits. They brighten our cities, clean our air, and bring us happiness with their colors and scents. In fact, they are vital to our health in many ways – both physical and psychological. We bring them into the home, not only as ingredients in our kitchens, but also in the form of houseplants and floral decorations. 

Some of us are natural at raising plants – the so-called "green-fingered" among us. Others feel that they only have to look at a plant and it will keel over and die. Most of us are somewhere in the middle.

Obviously, we live in different climates, and many plants are particular about where they grow, although we can, to an extent, control the micro-climates of our homes. If you have a few acres of land, you probably know more about raising plants than we do, but even those of us who live in small apartments in the city can usually find space for a couple of plants. If you have a balcony or similar, you practically have a mini-farm!

This time we are going to look at some simple and fun food plants that can be easily grown by beginners. Some may surprise you. We suggest starting with herbs. Not only do these brighten up our meals, but they can also be attractive and alluringly-scented additions to the home environment. Some can only be grown from seeds; others are also allowed to root in water from cuttings. 

One of the world's most popular herbs is, of course, basil. It grows easily in pots on windowsill or balcony. Two or three pots will keep you supplied with this delicious herb for months. The secret is to keep picking it and nipping any flowers in the bud. But, should you forget, you may be pleasantly surprised at how pretty basil flowers are! And basil is also an insect repellent! 

All these hanging organizers feature strong boards to support the weight of your belongings safely and to keep the shelves from losing shape. They also have useful side pockets to hold your smaller items while giving you easy access to the contents. The elegant, minimalist style means they can be employed openly, and they will blend into your decor with ease. Ideal for storing sweaters, shirts, knitwear, pants, handbags, shoes, hats, socks, ties, etc. Also, they are all collapsible, meaning that they can be easily stored when not in use.

Balcony Basil

Balcony Basil

Luke Fildes creator QS:P170,Q1855648, Samuel Luke Fildes - The Empty Chair (The Graphic, 1870), marked as public domain, more details on Wikimedia Commons

Lamb Skewers with Cumin and Chili, Xi'an, China - Photo by Ken Fletcher

Another easy-to-grow herb is mint. It is best grown in pots or tubs even if you have outdoor space as, otherwise, it spreads like wildfire and will rapidly take over a garden and become very difficult to remove. It grows well from sprouted cuttings and, of course, is excellent in mint teas and other drinks as well as an ingredient in savory dishes. Great with lamb!

Home Grown Mint

Home Grown Mint

Another favorite, at least among spice lovers, is the chili family. These are best raised from seeds, but if you buy some fresh, they come with free seeds that most of us just throw away! They come in varieties and many levels of heat. Find out what is available locally and is in your comfort zone.

Colorful Chilies

Colorful Chilies 

These are our choices, but make your own. Treat it as fun and don't worry! Involve the kids or grandkids, too. And if it doesn't work out, what have you lost? Nothing. Get it right and your dinner will taste better because you will know you grew at least some of it yourself! 

Next time, consider growing some tomatoes to go with your basil!

It seems no matter how much we modernize, we can't quite let go of our remote past, which is probably a good thing. Now pass me another spicy lamb skewer!

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