Grow Your Own!
By: Carleton Rivers, RD
Did you know that growing your own vegetables is easy? A few of the easiest vegetables to grow include lettuce, Swiss chard, green beans, carrots, potatoes, spinach, and onions. This month, you are going to learn how to grow your own Swiss chard! You may have never tasted Swiss chard before, but it’s one of the easiest vegetables to grow. It is also a very nutritious vegetable by acting as an antioxidant and playing a role in bone health. Swiss chard seeds can be planted in the ground but also do well in containers that are at least 12 inches deep and 12 inches wide. When planting seeds, be sure to save some for later just in case insects or anything else that may destroy what you are trying to grow attacks your harvest. Follow the steps below to plant your own Swiss chard.
Growing Swiss Chard:
- Soak seeds in warm water for 15 minutes to speed up germination (sprouting of a seed).
- If planting in a container, fill with potting soil.
- Bury each seed ½-inch in the dirt and a few inches apart from other seeds.
- Place plant where it will get full sunlight (plant may tolerate some shade).
- Add fertilizer to soil and water until soil is moist (remember to continue watering plant so that the soil will remain moist).
- When it is time to harvest the Swiss chard, cut off the outer leaves at the bottom of the stalk. New growth will take the place of the trimmed stalks.
- Wash Swiss chard leaves and enjoy!
Quick Caramelized Onions Swiss Chard
(Recipe from Cooking Light)
- 1 tsp. olive oil
- 2 cups sliced yellow onion
- Dash of baking soda
- 12 cups chopped Swiss chard
- 2 TBSP water
- 2 tsp. sherry vinegar
- ¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
This recipe requires using the stovetop so please ask for the assistance of an adult.
Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add olive oil; swirl to coat skillet. Add onion and baking soda; cook 10 minutes or until browned. Add Swiss chard and water to pan; cook three minutes or until chard wilts. Stir in vinegar and freshly ground black pepper.