Many of us are growing our own vegetables this summer, right? Here are 5 hacks that we can use to feed our vegetable garden right from our kitchen.
Plants need soil, water and sunlight to grow. They also need decomposing organic matter to thrive. We often think that’s compost and complicated, and it needs to be bought in bags from a special store. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Over years of trial and error in my garden and after a whole lot of advice from my mom, gardening enthusiast extraordinaire, I have learned that our garden can thrive from what we have in our very own kitchen and pantry. From plant to food to plant again – the cycle can continue as it should, right?
Watch: Puneeta on CHCH Morning Live talking about how we can all feed our garden from what we have available in our kitchens.
5 Kitchen Hacks that Feed Your Garden
Fertilizing plants sounds like a complicated task, right? I admit it can be a long process where decomposed organic material is used to replenish nutrients in the soil in the garden. Here are 5 natural and dare I say it, shortcut hacks to feed our garden.
Put used tea leaves to work
Rinse the used tea leaves and dry them in the sun for 2-3 days. If you use tea bags, follow the same steps. Let the bags dry. Afterward, snip a corner of the teabag and shake the tea leaves out. Crumble this dried mixture into the soil around the base of your plants. Push it all down and water around as you normally would.
Eggs for breakfast?
Save the eggshells, rinse them out and let them dry for a couple of days. The calcium and minerals in the shells are great for plants. Once dry, crumble and sprinkle in the soil. You could also mix the dried tea leaves and eggshell crumble and whizz it in the blender for a coarse ground mix. Save it for your indoor and outdoor plants.
Baking Banana Bread?
Make banana peel tea. This sounds icky, I know but hang tight, what follows is a great hack for times of COVID when so many of us are baking banana bread. Save the peels for your plants. They are rich in potassium and good for “fruiting plants” like tomatoes and peppers. Steep the peels in a bowl of water for 2-3 days and then dilute the water and use it for your garden. People also dice the peels and bury them around the plants but I’ve found the tea to be a simpler way and it attracts fewer bugs.
Reuse that Cooking Water
Another natural way to feed our garden is to reuse leftover (unsalted) water from steaming veggies, pasta, rice and boiled eggs. Let it cool and use it to water plants. I fill glass jars and keep them on my kitchen counter. This is great for indoor and outdoor plants.
Make an Epsom Salt Solution
Make an Epsom salt solution with 1 tbsp Epsom salt in a gallon of water. Use this water around the base of the plant. Epsom Salt helps green up plants and is great for lush growth, in particular for roses, tomatoes and peppers. Epsom Salt is acidic though and not advised for soil that is already high in acidity.