One of the best reasons to have a plot of land is the vegetable garden I am able to grow. Some crops provide near-instant gratification. One of the quickest trips to my table was by fresh chard from the garden.
I use a modified version of a square foot garden, but not in raised beds. We started out with a 4 x 3 grid last year and this year for Mothers’ Day my son helped me build two more frames. I’ve added in some weeping hose and a timer, so it basically waters itself. The squares keep me very organized and makes it easy to know how much to plant. You can see how quickly this rainbow chard filled out it square. I’m pretty sure I had four plants per box last year.
Swiss chard needs very little maintenance and will happily continue to grow as you harvest the leaves. I just take a small paring knife out to the garden with me and cut it close to the ground.
Here’s my first crop of the year:
The trick then is to find recipes for all these healthy greens. One of my favourites and a great choice if you are looking for some meat substitutes, calls for Pinto Beans and goat cheese. How can you go wrong? You can find the recipe here. I especially like the pinch of red pepper flakes. After you bake it it looks like this:
Do you have a favourite Swiss Chard recipe? Be sure to share it. We’ll be eating a lot of chard this summer!