My mom was an avid gardener and as a kid, no matter where we lived (and we moved a lot) my mom always had a huge garden. She grew tons of vegetables, flowers and loved house plants.

And we always had to do all the weeding of course. We even used to get paid a nickel a piece for Tomato Worms which I think are just about the most disgusting worms on the planet. Although as a mini entrepreneur I would race out to the garden each day to see how many I could collect.

SUNFLOWEREvery summer I remember my mom standing for hours over a hot stove for   hours canning fruits, vegetables, jams, jellies and sauces for the winter. I always thought she was crazy until it came time to eat all the fruits of her labor so to speak.

Looking back we were very poor. Didn’t have much in the ways of nice things or extras like many others, but as a single mom, my mom always made sure we had plenty of healthy food to eat. I never had a soda, fast food or candy until I was a teenager and got corrupted by my friends lol.

It seemed very normal growing up but now I realize how much work and effort went into making sure we had all we needed. She worked a full time job, then came home and cooked, cleaned, helped us with school work AND took care of an amazing garden. You see having a garden was cheaper and healthier than buying convenience foods and she made it a priority.

Unfortunately I did not get her green thumb and try as I might I am not the best at having house plants unless you count plastic ones. I have been making my best effort at having a vegetable garden the last few years and while it is not perfect it is starting to come together. My favorite things to grow are tomatoes, peppers and herbs such as cilantro, basil and oregano. Must be the Italian in me as I love to make tomato sauce and these are the easiest things to grow!

Do you have a garden and what do you like to grow? I would love to hear your tips and secrets for success!