• Any new recipes for incorporating summer squash into our meals? There’s going to be a rebellion in our house if I serve it one more time this summer!

    From Jess
    September 7, 2011

  • Jess, check out the Healthy Recipe tab under the Nutrition section of the site and you’ll find recipes for “Roasted Butternut and Caramelized Onion Mash” and “Barley-Butternut Risotto” listed under side dishes. Let us know if you try them out!

    From Alicea
    September 8, 2011

Lessons on Caring for a Garden

Butternut Squash

Butternut Squash

There are so many benefits from growing your own fruits and vegetables in your back yard.  The idea is oh so sweet and sounds great but when it comes down to it, it’s a lot of work.  Here are some reminders and things to think about when maintaining a garden.  Depending on where you live and the types of soil you have can make a huge difference in your growing.  Here in South Carolina we have very sandy soil, if you can even call it soil.  It’s important that we use a mixture of organic manure and potting soil as it provides a balance of nutrients for the seeds to sprout and proper drainage so the plants do not drowned during heavy rains.  Pay attention to your garden, as it needs love just about every day.  Make sure all weeds have been cleared on a regular basis so they do not overtake the plants sunlight or nutrients.  Even more importantly you want to make sure the garden is watered regularly especially if you are located in the dry areas of the nation. 

So you may be thinking, “That’s it? That sounds pretty easy,” which in case it is but there is a little thing called nature and it’s wonderful insects and even fungus that can take over a garden and take out many of your plants.  Such things as mites that are so hard to see can literally level your plants in about two days.  Since I was trying to keep our garden 100% organic, it was tough not to use any insecticide or pesticide at all.  Yet, I was able to find an organic pesticide and insecticide but it was too last because we lost our four zucchini plants.  This is where the whole paying attention to your garden comes in; the plants looked gorgeous and were very bountiful… then leveled two days later.  The good news is that we salvaged the other two zucchini plants and they are flowering but for some reason are not growing yet.  The summer heat probably played a factor as well. Sometimes even though you water and maintain the garden to the best of your ability, even then you may have trouble with your plants growing fruit. 

We have had a tough growing season this summer for a couple of reasons, heat, ants, and mites!  Oh my!  Some things I have learned are throwing oat bran or grits where ants are heavily populated, that will kill them off.  Basically, they ingest the wonderful grains and then it expands too big for their little systems and sends them to garden heavenJ  As for mites, an organic insecticide works really great to rid them from the plants and their roots, remember they love squash.  On a more exciting note, we have grown lots of cucumbers, fresh herbs, cantaloupe, beans, and now sprouting is our butternut squash.  We have had a few tomatoes here and there, and with the climate cooling off we expect to see more tomatoes in the next couple of weeks!

The main goal is to give your garden enough love so that it produces love in return.  A little attention can go a long way, and eating your home grown vegetables and fruits go even further.  

For more pictures visit the Culinary Arts Center at Hilton Head Health Facebook page!



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