Nothing Beets Locally Grown

A great way to purchase fresh fruits and veggies is by attending a farmer’s market. Farmer’s markets are community centerpieces. Shopping at markets helps support local agriculture and recirculates money back into the community. Many times, shoppers can find food that is pesticide-and herbicide-free. Since food is sourced from nearby, shopping at a market helps save the energy and petroleum that is used to ship food around the world. Plastic waste can also be prevented, just remember to bring your own reusable produce bags.

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Vegetable Gardening for Beginners

raised bedYou may have read several posts on this blog relating to the non-spring-like weather we have been experiencing here in the Midwest. Well, it’s still cold, but the weather has to break sooner or later and that concept has me so excited to get my garden going! Have you ever considered gardening? Are you new to gardening? You may have considered it and gotten overwhelmed by the details- What class should I take? What books should I read? What do I do?

I am here to tell you to Just Do It! There is nothing like watching your own food grow and then eating it. Things have been growing in the dirt since the beginning of time with no help from humans, so if you approach your garden project with this in mind and just aim to take it lightly, gardening can be really fun! I got started about four years ago only because someone at work left a flat full of different seedlings and a sign that said help yourself. I waited until the end of the day and only a few disappeared, so I carried the whole flat home on the bus and got started with just a 4´ × 4´ plot. Here are some beginner tips; just things I’ve learned over the last few years, that may help you get started. All these tips will be from a Madison, WI, perspective, but should be applicable anywhere in the midwest. Continue reading “Vegetable Gardening for Beginners”

For the Love of Squash

The weather is getting colder, and the leaves are changing color; fall is upon us. It’s time to pull out your sweaters and scarves and cozy up under a blanket. It’s time to pick apples, carve pumpkins and eat one of my favorite comfort foods—winter squash.

Here at Promega our culinary team tends a garden onsite, filling our menus and plates with amazingly fresh and local produce. Our constantly changing breakfast and lunch menus are just as good of an indicator of the season as the calendar. This time of year dishes with tomatoes, beans and eggplant are disappearing and are being replaced winter squash, potatoes and root veggie dishes. Winter Squash Soup is starting to show up on the menu and Nate Herndon, our head chef, has been kind enough to share one of his favorite recipes with us. Continue reading “For the Love of Squash”

Want to Look More Attractive? Eat More Fruits and Vegetables.

Face made of vegetablesFruits and vegetables are an important dietary source of nutrients, including antioxidants that help stave off cellular damage due to oxidative stress and could protect us against a variety of age-related diseases, cardiovascular disease, diabetes and perhaps some forms of cancer. Nutrition experts advise us to eat at least five servings of fruits and vegetables each day, but many of us don’t. Furthermore, the health benefits of a vegetable-rich diet aren’t necessarily enough motivation for us to change our diets, even though we know we should. A recent finding reported in PLoS ONE gives us an extra reason to incorporate more fruits and vegetables into our menus: We might just improve our skin color and look more attractive.

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How Does Your Garden Grow? Why, Naturally, Of Course!

How does your garden grow? Well, normally, I would tell you that it doesn’t, not until late May anyway. But this year, the grass is green, the trees are flowering and the garden is already tilled in early April! Unseasonably warm temperatures come with questions: Is this global warming? The 2012 apocalypse? When can I start planting???

I fell in love with vegetable gardening about three years ago when a coworker brought in some extra seedlings. There is nothing like watching food grow up from a mere seed and then harvesting and eating! At Promega, we have some community garden space, which is great since my black walnut tree at home kills all my tomatoes. We are attempting to keep this garden space organic. As a new gardener, I am still learning what this means, so I thought I would share some of my new-found information.

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