Growing Your Own Protein
By: Debi Borden-Miller
Are you a Flexitarian??? This is a new term for consumers that choose to go meatless part time. 30% of Americans are eating more plants and 38% of Americans go meatless at least 1 time per week. Meatless Monday anyone? So, are you eating the right plants to give you protein? Yes, proteins are in plants!!! Edamame, Peas, Broccoli, Spinach, Kale, Sunflower Seeds, and Asparagus all contain protein. You can grow your own protein in your garden very easily. All those plants will grow in Colorado in your garden. You may already be growing some of them.
Peas, Broccoli, Spinach and Kale all like the cooler part of the season. That means planting them right now. You can plant them from seed or buy the plants at your favorite local garden center. They will produce until it gets warm and then you can replant in late August for a fall crop. Even though they like cooler temperatures, be sure to grow them in a full sun location and amend your soil with compost.
Edamame and Sunflowers can be planted after danger of frost (usually after May 10). Both of those will take a while to produce the pods or seeds you want, but by late summer you should have a great crop! You will have to protect your sunflowers from the birds – they like their protein too!!!