Gardening

Grow Your Own Food:

 

Do you know where your food comes from?  From the supermarket, duh.  Well, yes, that is technically correct.  But before your produce made its way to the neatly arranged fruit and vegetable aisle of the supermarket, they came from somewhere.  And that somewhere could range from a local, sustainable farm near you or it could have traveled thousands of miles and crossed many country borders and/or continents from a commercial farm where they use pesticide.

 

But how would you feel if you could grow your own food?  Imagine picking fruits and vegetables from your backyard garden or from a planter you placed in a sunny spot in your living room.  You have followed that vegetable and/or fruit’s journey from a seed or seedling.  You have cared for it day after day.  You’ve given it water, plenty of sunshine, and given it rest.  And after all of your hard work that plant bears you fruit and/or vegetables that can be on your plate on the same day.  It didn’t have to travel thousands of miles to get to your plate and to your mouth.

 

Now, there is nothing wrong with buying your produce from the supermarket.  It is a great way to support local businesses.  However, we all have the right to know where our produce came from and how they were grown.  I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to ingest produce sprayed with chemicals that I can’t even pronounce.  I don’t know what kind of long-term effects they will have on my body.

 

But not everyone has space to garden and not everyone can afford to buy a farm to grow food.  True.  I’m not asking you to quit your job and buy 20 acres of land to become a farmer.  What I’m trying to say is that we all should know where our food comes from.  And there’s no better way of appreciating where your food comes from by growing your own.  Start small by growing herbs in small pots and place them on your kitchen windowsill.  Appreciate the fact that you grew the food you are eating, and it didn’t travel thousands of miles to get to your plate.  There is a great freedom that comes when you can grow your own food and not rely on companies to deliver mass produce to your shopping basket or shopping cart.  You become more aware and conscious of your health and environment.

 

If you would like to learn more about the basics of how to grow your own food click the link below on how to start growing your own food.  Now this is a broad guideline on how to start planting.  The goal here is for you to start growing your food.

 

Holding Plant
Gardening
Plants in Boxes

Step 1: Know your planting zone and first and last frost

Knowing your planting zone is very important because it determines what you can grow and how long your growing season is.  If you live in Alaska, your growing season is very short compared to someone who lives in Florida, where they can grow all year round.  The

Farmer’s Almanac website is a great resource to find your planting zone and your first and last frost.

 

 

Step 2: Plant vegetables and fruits that you actually like to eat and make sure they grow in your zone

Why plant vegetables if you’re not going to eat them?  Unless you’re planning on growing vegetables and fruits to give away or to sell, you should pick plants that you will be planning on eating.  Just make sure that the vegetables and fruits you would like to plant are suitable for your growing zone.  For example, for those who live in colder zones they cannot grow tropical fruits such as lemon.  However, colder zones can grow perennials.  Perennials are plants that you can plant once and will bear fruit every growing season.  Examples of perennials are blueberries, peach, and apples.

 

Step 3: Gather gardening materials

All you need to grow your vegetables and fruits are good soil or medium and healthy seeds or seedlings.  Now, if you have space in the backyard there are many gardening options.  You can grow your vegetables on a raised bed or not, till or no till, hügelkultur, the Ruth Stout method, hydroponics, and so many more.  The type of garden style will depend on your current living situation.  If you live in an apartment obviously you won’t be able to have a hügelkultur, unless you’ll find a community garden plot that will allow you. 

There are many organic soils that has been mixed for growing vegetables.  So, as a beginner, there is no need to fret on what should be mixed.

 

Step 4: Watch YouTube videos

You can never learn enough about gardening.  Everyone has different growing style and techniques that you could learn from.  There are many YouTube videos that teach on how to grow a specific plant for your growing zone.

 

Step 5: Just Start

You can only read and watch about gardening but if you don’t start then you will not have any final product.  Don’t have analysis paralysis.  Make mistakes because you will learn from them.  The more you do something the more you will learn.

[More excellent resources will be posted here as they come! Stay tuned!]