• Home Home

Gardener demonstrates method to tackle 'very important' task for making sure your veggies flourish: 'They can develop to their full potential'

"You want your veggies to produce well for you."

"You want your veggies to produce well for you."

Photo Credit: YouTube

If you've ever started vegetables from seed, you know that you usually end up sowing them more densely than the plants should grow. While thinning out the extra seedlings is a must for a productive veggie patch, it can feel like such a waste to just toss those precious baby plants.

Well, garden waste no more. As one clever gardener shows, you can put your thinned seedlings to very tasty use.

The scoop

Gardening expert Susan's in the Garden (@SusansInTheGarden) recently took to YouTube to share her "tedious but very important" method for thinning her thickly sown Swiss chard and beet seedlings.

"They need to be spaced properly now so that they can develop to their full potential," she explains while plucking the extras. But rather than throwing them out, she has a delicious solution: "All of these are edible. I'm just going to wash them, snip off the little roots, and steam them to go with dinner tonight."

She gives her beet seedlings the same treatment, thinning them to 3 inches apart and saving the tender thinnings for the table.

Her key tip? "Remember, if you want your veggies to produce well for you, thin them to the proper spacing, which you can find on your seed packet."

How it's working

Eating your thinned seedlings is a win-win for your wallet and the planet. Most importantly, it prevents unnecessarily wasting the time, effort, and resources you've already invested in growing those little plants from seed.

Why toss them in the compost when you could toss them in a salad instead? Tender young greens such as Swiss chard and beet tops are packed with nutrients and antioxidants. Harvesting them as you thin puts super fresh, hyperlocal produce on your plate for free.

What's more, getting the most food possible from the space you have helps reduce the demand for store-bought veggies. This cuts down on the fuel used for shipping produce, plus all the packaging waste that comes with it. It's a tiny but tasty way to shrink your environmental footprint.

What people are saying

Gardeners are eating this hack up. The comment section is full of enthusiasm.

"Mmmmm I love them steamed with some good wine vinegar and a good olive oil....a little minced garlic....Yum!!" one user said.

Another wrote: "I just planted mine yesterday...I started them in the 2 cup method....it worked!"

With a little creativity, even your garden "waste" can become a flavorful, planet-friendly meal. Bon appétit.

Join our free newsletter for easy tips to save more, waste less, and help yourself while helping the planet.

Cool Divider