Saturday, March 11, 2017

Check out my interview with Southwest Institiute of Healing Arts

Friday, November 11, 2016

10 Healthy fall Vegetables to grow in
North Carolina
                                                                                   Photography by Shannon Coleman
   Moving from Florida to North Carolina makes it challenging when it comes to gardening.  The seasons are very different and the foods that can be grown can be different as well.  Since it is fall I decided to find out the healthiest vegetables to grow at this time.  I was surprised to learn which ones they were.  The great thing is that North Carolinians can grow vegetables year around.  If you are not into gardening this information is still helpful when shopping for local, seasonal foods.

   Early August to early September is the best time for growing lettuce in the Raleigh area.  This is a great choice for the garden because it is filled with many vitamins and minerals.  There is a great variety of lettuces that you can mix up in the garden for even more nutrients such as Romaine, Buttercrunch and leafy green lettuce is used in salads so having it right in your back yard will save you time, gas and it will be very fresh. Lettuce is best grown in cooler weather which make it a great fall vegetable.

2. Carrots
This is another vegetable that is great for early fall.  It is rich in beta carotene, vitamin K and C, folate acid manganese and potassium.  There is nothing sweeter than fresh carrots. The best part about growing carrots is pulling them out of the soil when they are ready.  It is always a great surprise to see what each unique carrot will look like. My kids love picking the carrots out of our garden.

3. Cauliflower
This amazing vegetable has sulforaphane which is an anti-cancer compound.  They are also filled with antioxidants, fiber, minerals and vitamins.  This cool weather vegetable should be harvested before it becomes grainy.  It is best to keep a close eye on the vegetable so you do not pick it too soon or too late.

4. Beets
This is one of my favorite cool weather vegetables.  It has a delicious taste and I also use the coloring to make other foods pink in color.  This is another root plant like the carrots but you can also eat the greens from the beets as well.  It is great in salads. The beets contain glycine betaine which helps lower the risk of heart disease and strokes.  They also have vitamin B, iron, magnesium, and folates just to name a few.

5. Peas
Now this is not exactly a vegetable but a legume. I have not grown myself yet.  I usually buy peas locally.  The great thing about growing peas in the garden is that it adds nitrogen to the soil which helps the other plants grown. They are tasty and very healthy for you. Peas are a fantastic fiber source as well as vitamin K, C and protein.

6. Brussels Sprouts
This is another vegetable that I have not grown myself yet but they are very fascinating to look at.  These little vegetables taste marvelous and are very healthy for the system.  Cold weather actually makes Brussels sprouts taste even better. When the buds are firm you can cut them off.  Most times it is after a frost. Brussels Sprouts is a cancer fighting vegetable and has many vitamins and minerals like K and C along with antioxidants. Brussels Sprouts are not everyone’s favorite but they sure do offer a lot for the health.

This vegetable is in the same growing family as cauliflower so it also produces the anti-cancer compound as well as antioxidants, fiber, vitamins and minerals.  It grows wonderfully in cool weather. There are several varieties of cabbage to choose from and the red and green cabbage has different nutrients to offer. Cabbage needs to be harvested at full size but before the head breaks.

8. Pumpkins
Not only are pumpkins decorative but they are tasty too.  Pumpkins are in the winter squash family and are a great addition to the fall vegetables.  They are fairly easy and can be used for many things.  Pumpkins have folic acid, fiber, omega-3's, vitamin B, niacin and much more nutrients to offer. Be sure to cut the vine (not pull) a couple inches up from the pumpkin to keep it fresh.  Be creative with pumpkins.  You can roast the seeds, make soaps, breads, side dishes and so much more.

9. Spinach
  Spinach has a light taste that is great for children and adult taste buds.  This vegetable is full of iron, vitamin and mineral.  Its full of fiber to wash the toxins out.  Spinach is great raw or sautéed.  This vegetable needs cool soil so it is best to shade it with other plants when growing it.

This vegetable is a powerhouse full of health benefits.  Kale has different varieties that all look and taste different such as Iacinato, winterbor or Red Russia. Kale is good raw, roasted or sautéed. Kale is easy to grow so if you are a beginner gardener try starting with kale.  Kale offers Vitamin, B, K, A, C as well as fiber.  This vegetable also offers other health benefits including cancer fighting properties and antioxidant.

So if you are just beginning to garden, a long time gardener or shop local than you are on the right track to living healthier.  These are just 10 great fall vegetables to enjoy in North Carolina and there are many more to explore.  Just because it is getting chilly doesn't mean we can't eat and grow fresh foods. Stay healthy everyone.

For more information call 941-228-3710 or visit my website at

The Mini Farming Guide to Vegetable Gardening
by Brett L. Markham Copyright 2012

Sunday, October 23, 2016

About Me

Shannon Coleman is a wellness consultant who helps people find happiness and clarity.  She provides guidance in the fields of gardening for residence and business properties.  She has a true passion to helps others live a healthier lifestyle.  Shannon has attended SUNY Ulster and Southwest Institute of Healing Arts to learn her passion to help others.  She has her own garden in her yard to enjoy fresh foods with her family.  Shannon is also a photographer and promotes health and wellness through her photography.  Connect with Shannon by reading her blog at and she also has a website  When Shannon is not helping others find clarity in their life’s and gardening she is hiking with her family, playing tennis, taking pictures of nature, and making yummy meals.