I have always enjoyed gardening. Flowers for the soul and vegetables for the belly. For me, there is nothing more soothing and joyous than picking fresh beans or squash for the supper table with a side of colorful flowers in a vase to brighten my day.
People have always gardened for food, since the beginning of time. Their goal was to feed their families. Today, we can buy any kind of produce any time of the year (thanks to worldwide markets and transportation) in our local grocery stores. I wouldn’t say that everything tastes great but it is available. Back in the day, if. you didn’t grow, you didn’t eat.
It is important to know where your food is from and how it was grown. Poor hygiene in the fields is pretty common. Several times last year, you couldn’t eat Romaine lettuce because of some nefarious pathogens. There are many examples of this kind of thing.
If you grow your own veggies you can control what fertilizers or pesticides are used on them. You don’t need to wax them to keep them fresh. Nothing tastes as good as a sweet, juicy Sungold cherry tomato straight from the vine, warmed by the sun. Or a crisp, crunchy cucumber you discovered hanging from a vine at the back of the row.
During World War I, there was a food shortage. Initially called the War Garden Movement, people were encouraged to grow their own. Here is a quote from an article on the history of the Victory Garden,
“. . . advocating that civilians “Sow the seeds of victory” by planting their own vegetables, the war garden movement (as it was originally known) was spread by word of mouth through numerous women’s clubs, civic associations and chambers of commerce, which actively encouraged participation in the campaign. Amateur gardeners were provided with instruction pamphlets on how, when and where to sow, and were offered suggestions as to the best crops to plant, along with tips on preventing disease and insect infestations.” To read more click on the link: https://www.history.com/news/americas-patriotic-victory-gardens
With our “shelter in place” orders and possible food shortages, you too can have your own garden. it is a relaxing way to spend the time. Feed your family and if you have an abundance, feed your neighbors!
You don’t need a half-acre or a large garden plot in your backyard to accomplish this. Containers are ideal for those with balconies, small patios, or small yards. The only real thing you need is at least 6 – 8 hours of sun and the ability to keep them watered. There are things you can grow even with partial sun and veggies/flowers that like cooler weather.
This is the first in a series of posts that will help you to grow your own vegetables and flowers. I will talk about types of containers, growing in the ground, types of veggies best suited for various conditions, etc. Stay tuned.
You may find that after this crisis is over you will still want to grow for fun!
This was something that Mrs. Obama (the former First Lady) encouraged, long before all this mess. I wrote about it back then, referring to the newer versions of the Victory Gardens as Prosperity Gardens. I don’t remember where I got that name from.