Earth Day…

We’re celebrating Earth Day today! How do we honor our Earth? For us it’s about teaching our kids how to live off the Earth naturally and learning how to grow and harvest our own food. During spring break we had the duty of replanting our vegetable garden.  It’s so rewarding growing your own vegetables and watching your kids harvest and eat the vegetables they grow. Eventually, I would love to have our whole front and backyard full of edible organic food.

Homegrown vegetables taste so amazing.  You can feel the warmth of the sun on them when you pick them as well as appreciate how healthy they are for your family. This year we planted: cherry tomatoes, heirloom tomatoes, yellow tomatoes, green, yellow and brown bell peppers, summer squash, cucumbers, radishes, celery, kale, lettuces, zucchini, onions, hot peppers, cilantro, parsley, basil, lemon balm, dandelions, thyme, oregano and much more to come!

Unfortunately, store bought vegetables taste like plastic, they look beautiful but that’s about it! When did we as a society get away from growing our own food and herbs?  I didn’t grow up growing my own vegetables, but once I started I’ve been hooked!  Some years produce better crops than others but it’s like anything else in life — you have to work at it. Our goal is to grow more and more of our own vegetables and herbs and at some point add backyard chickens. Like everything else this year, I’m on it with a vengeance! It’s so rewarding to walk out my kitchen door and grab some tomatoes, lettuce, squash and basil for a quick salad (see recipe below). What’s even better is there’s no waste because you only pick what you need. If you don’t have room to plant a small garden, then plant in pots (which sometimes are a lot easier to maintain). Whatever you can do, no matter how small or large, try to grow something this season.  The easiest edible to start with is herbs. You can’t mess up rosemary, thyme, basil and mint. Do yourself and your family a favor and try growing just one vegetable or herb this season. I promise you’ll be hooked!

Spring is here…

Ali in the Valley

Garden Design from Sunset Magazine : Click here BACKYARD PROJECTS for more information.

Tomato & Basil Salad

Wow! So easy and so delicious!

Prep Time5 mins

Cook Time5 mins

Total Time10 mins

Servings: 2

Author: Alison Ball


  1. 2 large organic home grown tomatoes

  2. 10 fresh home grown basil leaves

  3. Cheddar cheese or mozzarella shaved pieces

  4. 1/2 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar

  5. 1/3 tablespoon of extra-virgin olive oil

  6. 1/4 teaspoon salt

  7. 1/4 teaspoon pepper


Cut tomatoes into thin slices, top with one or two pieces of basil leaves. Salt and pepper to taste, then drizzle the balsamic vinegar and extra-virgin olive oil on each slice. Add shaved cheese on top!

#earthday #Garden #slide



Ali  in  the  Valley

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