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Grow Calcium Rich Vegetables

Keep a fresh supply of bone-building calcium growing in your garden all season long.

Grow calcium rich greens like mustard, turnips and kale during the cooler months.  These vegetables not only tolerate cooler air and soil temperatures, but taste better when harvested during cooler weather.

Plant these greens in rows or blocks in a traditional vegetable garden or mix them with flowers in containers or mixed borders. The taller mustard and kale make attractive vertical accents, while providing color and texture in the planting.  

And don’t stop here.  Include some beans in this year’s garden.  Pinto and navy beans as well as blackeye peas, which are really a bean, are not only high in calcium but also store well dried.  

Wait until the danger of frost has passed and the soil has warmed to plant these seeds.  Vining varieties can be trained on a fence or up a trellis to save space.  Bush types usually mature sooner and are good options for those gardening in colder climates with shorter growing seasons.

A bit more information: Maximize your garden’s productivity with proper harvesting.  Pick the outer leaves of mustard and kale when they are young and tender, less than 8 to 10 inches tall.   New leaves will continue to form, extending the harvest season.   Harvest turnip greens when they are 4 to 6 inches tall.  If you leave a few leaves in the center, more leaves will appear.  Either harvest these or allow the new leaves and underground bulbous root to mature.  And save a few blackeye peas for your New Year’s feast.  Some believe they bring prosperity and good luck for the coming year.

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