Written by David S.
Juicing is a popular way to consume fruit and vegetables by those seeking health through high-impact juice meals. If that is something that you do or want to do, keep reading as we discuss growing foods that you can juice.
- Three med/large apples make one cup of apple juice
- 2 1/2 bunches of kale make one cup of kale juice
- Nine medium carrots make about one cup of carrot juice
- Four cups of spinach yields about one cup of spinach juice
- Three large oranges make about one cup of orange juice
- Four ounces of juice is equivalent to 1/2 serving of veg or fruit
That list is a fraction of the fruits and vegetables you can juice. However, it also illustrates the volume of food needed and hints at the cost of what you would pay if you purchased all the foods you juice at the grocery store, especially with the cost of food rising.
Both of those facts make it more appealing to grow your fruits and vegetables for home consumption and juicing. So that’s just what we discuss in this blog – how to grow the foods you juice.
Popular Foods for Juicing
Fruit – Oranges, bananas, grapes, apples, cherries, watermelon, cucumbers, tomatoes, and many others.
Roots – Carrots, beets, parsnips, ginger, fennel, etc.
Leafy Greens – Lettuce, chard, kale, cabbage, broccoli, collard greens, and more.
Grasses – wheatgrass, sprouted grasses and grains, rye, oat, spelt, and barley
Many of these fruits or vegetables are easy to grow and sustainable if you practice a few modern garden techniques, such as successive planting.
Getting Started Growing for Juicing
A common mistake when people start gardening, regardless of the reason, is that they plant everything they can. A better goal is to plant only the things you love and to leave a little room for experimenting with new foods. When you plant everything, you spend a lot of time caring for your garden and only eat a portion of what you grow. Instead, maximize your space by growing the foods you love.
Tips To Make Juice Gardens Successful
- Make a list of juices you like – orange, apple, carrot, mixed vegetables, etc.
- Find recipes of juice drinks or meals that you enjoy – think breakfast juices – smoothies, juices for the entire household, etc.
- Think about whether you will drink just juice, such as carrot juice, or if you will mix the juice with yogurt or Kiefer, etc.
The idea is to grow what you use. Doing so makes the investment of labor a reward and decreases the cost of groceries. You can determine how much you want to grow and how much work you want to put into the garden.
What You Need To Grow A Juice Garden
There are only a few things that you need. A good goal of any garden project is to keep the cost as low as possible. Seeds and plants need only good soil and water to grow. The rest of what we add to gardens is not always necessary.
Good soil – If your yard does not have quality garden soil – nutrient-rich and loamy, then you will need to amend the soil. Most plants want soil with all the nutrients they need and will hold water but not remain soggy or wet.
If you are growing in the ground, it is easy to amend the soil to make a growing environment that does not cost a fortune. If growing in containers, consider the organic soil options available at Green Thumb Nursery. We have a wide range of bagged soil and recommend brands such as Black Gold and FoxFarm.
Watering – You can use a garden hose to water most vegetables. Water at the base of plants so that the sunlight does not burn the plants. If you want to add the convenience of drip irrigation, you can – Be sure to check out the drip kits that Green Thumb Nursery offers.
Seeds or Seedlings – It is an excellent goal to stockpile an assortment of seeds you might want to grow for juicing. The reason to stockpile seeds is that transplants are not always available throughout the growing season. We do a good job of having some seedlings available, but those disappear at certain times of the year and will not reappear until the next growing season.
Microgreens and Off-season gardening
You can plant seeds almost anytime. You may need to provide extra care for the plants as they mature. Keep in mind also; some plants will bolt quickly in the summer heat. Those are the plants that you can consider for microgreens. Bok Choy is an example of a plant that will bolt quickly in the heat. Rather than try to raise it to harvest as a mature plant, plan to harvest it as soon as it has its second set of true leaves. You will get the same flavor from the plant and the ability to grow it year-round. Then, when the cooler growing season arrives, you can let some of those seedlings grow into mature plants.
Microgreens are an excellent way to grow many vegetables outside their normal growing habitat. Beets, kale, lettuces, grasses, and other plants make lovely microgreens. In addition, because microgreens grow quickly – usually harvest-ready in a few weeks – it is easy to grow a variety of fresh greens for juicing.
Juicing is an easy way to get kids to take in vegetables and an easy way to add a variety of vegetables to your meal planning. With a bit of work, some good soil, and a suitable variety of seeds or plants, you can begin to grow vegetables and fruit for juicing. Right now is a great time to add fruit trees to your landscape because it is bare-root fruit tree season. Be sure to stop by and check out the variety of fruit trees available at any of our five Southern California Green Thumb Nursery locations. Chat with our plant experts if you have questions about getting started or growing plants. We are here to help make your growing projects successful.
Do you like what you see? Sign up for our weekly newsletter to get content like this every week!