Ten potent SUPERFOODS you can grow right at home, without spending a fortune
-By Rhonda Johansson
It is a misconception to think that you have to be well off to eat nutritious items. You can save money by growing these 10 healthful superfoods in your backyard garden or inside your home.
- Carrot – The American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR) says that eating carrots reduces the risk of developing certain types of cancer. According to the group, a single carrot provides 200 percent of the recommended daily allowance for vitamin A. Carrots are also excellent sources of beta-carotene, alpha-carotene, luteolin, falcarinol, and other flavanoids that prevent chronic inflammation. Carrots can be easily grown too. They can be either placed in a pot or grown in the ground. Drill a hole in the soil around one centimeter deep with a trowel and sow seeds five centimeters apart. Cover this with soil and water regularly.
- Rocket – These contain more than three times the amount of nitrates than beetroot, as reported on DailyMail.co.uk. There is evidence that suggests that some plant-based nitrates may help lower blood pressure. To grow the vegetable, sow seeds thinly in a drill or in a pot. Cover the seeds with soil, then water. Gardeners recommend growing rocket in a slightly shady spot over summer. It is also recommended to sow every two weeks to have great harvests throughout summer and autumn.
- Blackberries – The fruit is low in calories and fat, but high in dietary fiber. This is why many dietitians recommend blackberries to people who want to lose weight. An article on LiveStrong.com also mentioned the fruit’s incredible antioxidant and antibacterial properties. The best way to grow your own blackberries is to buy a pot-grown plant to transfer into rich soil. It is suggested to choose a spot that has light shade. Plant the root ball in the ground, with eight cm above to cover. It is best to set up your blackberry harvest near a wall or fence, with horizontal wires spaced 45 cm apart for support.
- Blackcurrants – These berries are rich sources of vitamin C. It has been noted that 100g of berries contain around 200 mg of vitamin C; compare that to blueberries which only contain around six mg of vitamin C per 100g. This is a low-maintenance crop. To plant: dig a hole twice as wide as the root ball. Place the bush 10 cm deeper than how it was presented in the pot. Cover the area with a compost mix and pack in firmly.
- Kale – Enough cannot be said about this powerful superfood. TV botanist James Wong noted in the Daily Mail article that “dark-green kale has 30 times the vitamin K, 40 times the vitamin C and 50 times the vitamin A of iceberg lettuce.” Kale is also the easiest brassica to grow. Just make sure to plant seeds 45 cm apart to avoid competition. Water well.
- Parsley – Parsley is the world’s most popular garnish but it is also an amazing blood purifying superfood. They are also great sources of vitamins C, A, and K as well as folate and iron. Grow parsley in a pot in partial shade on the patio or a windowsill exposed to sunlight. Make sure to water parsley regularly.
- Cherry tomatoes – Rich in vitamin C and lycopene, tomatoes are a great addition to any diet. Try planting bush-type cherry tomatoes as they don’t require much pinching out. You can also try buying young plants to hang in pots or sow seeds indoors.
- Beetroot – These are a great source of folate, manganese, potassium, iron, and vitamin C. Beetroot love fertile soil, so make sure that before you sow the seeds, you improve the quality of your soil by blending in compost. Plant seeds in a sunny area, spacing seeds around 10 cm apart, and water regularly.
- Brussel sprouts – These plants are high in folic acid and fiber and have around twice as much vitamin C as an orange. You would need to buy brussel sprouts now to have a bountiful harvest in September. Botanists recommend waiting to harvest until after the first frost for better flavor. Plant seeds in an area where they will be exposed to sunlight but protected from strong winds. Sprouts need to be spaced around 60 cm apart. It is best to feed brussel sprouts in July with a high-nitrogen fertilizer.
- Watercress – These are packed with vitamin K and calcium. You can grow this in the ground or in a pot. Try sowing seeds in a shallow trench that is eight cm deep and cover the seeds with a sprinkling of soil. Water regularly. If you plant it in a pot, sit it in a tray that you keep filled with water and remember to flush out the pot thoroughly with water weekly.
It only makes sense that food that is natural and good for you should be readily available and inexpensive. Health and wellness experts encourage consuming only natural foods that can be easily grown at home. If the instructions detailed above still seem too hard for you, there’s an easier solution in sight. There are mini-farms that can be purchased quite affordably and which can be delivered right to your door. There is now no excuse to eat unhealthily.