Say you’ve already hopped on board and know that buying and eating locally grown food is more sustainable for the optimum well-being of your family’s health and for the growth of your community. You shop at your local mom & pop grocer or co-op and choose organic products, and you frequent the farmer’s market every Saturday morning for your favorite produce, but you’re ready to take the next step. You can take the farm-to-table template and harness that potential in your own backyard to create a garden-to-table lifestyle. Let me break down why we should make that transition together. . .

Good For You Foods

The garden-to-table lifestyle is really all about harnessing the peak nutrient density in produce. In a normal grocery supply chain for “fresh” foods, a significant amount of produce is harvested before it’s ripe, or frozen after picking, or shipped thousands of miles, or coated in chemicals to elongate shelf-life, or often, all of the above, severely diminishing the individual health benefits and negatively impacting our environment.

However, when you are growing your own food in your own backyard, you are in total control of the amount of time between when you harvest and consume your food. This means you’re absorbing the optimum levels of vitamins and minerals as you prepare and eat your home-grown food, while also enjoying the best possible taste. Plus, you can save some money on that monthly grocery bill by supplementing with your own veggies!

Elevated Flavors

The number one thing that upped my kitchen game is cooking garden-fresh foods. You can taste the difference immediately when the crisp salad greens are freshly picked,  or when the tomatoes in my bolognese are right off the vine. Besides the flavor bombs from ripe produce, I’ve also gotten more creative with recipes. You can add variations to tried-and-true recipes by adding different herbs, or try something completely new with a veggie you’ve never had before, like this celeriac salad. For year-round garden-to-table living, learn to store your harvest: can the late summer abundance of tomatoes, freeze produce or prepared recipes (like cubes of butternut squash for roasting or soups, or batches of pesto you can pull out in a pinch), and dry herbs for tea blends.

Mindful Connection

When I first started my own journey in the garden-to-table lifestyle in order to address lingering health issues, I thought the only benefit of the veggies I was growing in my backyard would be the nutritional value. I didn’t account for the fact that the very act of gardening would change my life, too. 

Stepping out into my garden daily to see the incremental growth of sweet peas that I had started from seed months earlier, tending to the soil in the bed of my leafy greens, & weeding and watering the raspberry bushes to provide the best environment for my garden to thrive was a therapeutic process for me.

The quiet mindfulness of being connected to mother nature in a way that I had been missing for years was what solidified my garden as an anchor in my life. I encourage all gardeners to relish in the quiet, take some time in nature to calm your mind & body, and intentionally step into who you are with more meaning.

Family Fun

Through collaborating with clients to install custom gardens that fit the lifestyle of their family, I know I’m not alone in recognizing the garden to be a place of grounding connection. I’ve seen families spend more quality time together as they plant, prune, and harvest produce, children learning right alongside mom & dad.

I’ve witnessed the joy of a kid popping a sweet cherry tomato into their mouth right off the vine for the first time, still warm from the sun. It’s fulfilling to see the creativity flow and the connection forged when people dig in and get their hands dirty together. And anyone can do it!

Create Community

An added bonus to growing your own food, besides just enriching your life & your family’s health? Spreading the wealth. It is so satisfying to be able to whip up a batch of your secret salsa recipe made entirely with ingredients grown in your own garden to gift to friends or bake a loaf of zucchini bread to take over to the neighbors. Imagine hosting a dinner party right in your garden, family and friends gathered around a picnic table eating a meal you created with the ingredients grown just steps away. As we reconnect to the beauty and importance of nourishing ourselves, we can share that with others. Be a leader in your community by encouraging and inviting others to reap the benefits of homegrown produce.

Curated Ingredients

The beauty of starting an edible garden is that you can design it to fit your tastes. If you’re an armchair mixologist, start small with a cocktail garden that is sure to impress guests. Or if you’ve identified your health goals and know you need to incorporate more salads in your diet, install a raised bed for leafy greens in the backyard. By planting ingredients you already know you enjoy, you eliminate the risk of wasting your harvest, and you can get more adventurous with new plants as you gain confidence in your gardening skills.

Space Inclusive

Not ready to make the jump to full-on farm-life? You don’t have to!

That’s the beauty of the garden-to-table lifestyle – you can control the size and set-up of your garden. Apartment living with no outdoor space available? Start a kitchen herb garden. 

Options ranging from a traditional in-ground plot, raised beds, season-elongating cold frames, to containers & pots means that there are more ways than ever to accomplish a garden-to-table lifestyle regardless of space.

Schedule a consult with me and we can brainstorm what makes the most sense for your situation.