Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Grow Your Own! How to Grow an Organic Garden: Part 2

So, have you started dreaming of your fresh picked cilantro or tomatoes yet? As I said yesterday, there is truly nothing like harvesting your own food! Except maybe the joy of eating it!

Today I'm going to talk about the top five reasons why I love my organic garden. I know you'll love your garden for the same reasons!

#1 Reason I love my organic garden :
It's fun!
Having a garden is so much fun for the entire family. Nathaniel loves being outside while I'm watering the plants. He digs his fingers in the dirt and puts his hands in the water. I can't wait to teach him how to plant seeds and harvest food from his "own" garden someday! These kinds of memories can be ones your children keep the rest of their lives. I'll never forget one hot Pleasanton summer when our large sideyard garden had watermelons galore! And I vividly remember picking zucchinis the size of a baseball bat and fresh rhubarb for pies. Having a garden truly is a family affair, which is good because it keeps it from being one more "task." We're all busy enough already!

#2 Reason why I love my organic garden: It's economical!
Especially these days, who's not in need of ways to save a little cash? Growing your own food can save you a ton! It's so affordable to get started, especially when you grow your food from seed, and you get SUCH a large return. If you do it right, you can even get enough to can, juice, or freeze the extra! And it's always fun to give some away to friends. It's the difference between spending $6 to buy one pound of organic tomatoes at Whole Foods, or buying $6 worth of seeds and having more tomatoes than you know what to do with, the entire summer!

#3 Reason why I love my organic garden:It's healthier!
Having your own garden is a great way to eat fresh picked organic food, especially if your budget is stretched already. And food is truly bursting with nutrients when it is picked at the peak of ripeness. If you do it right, you won't need to use any fertilizers or pesticides. I live in Missouri, referred to by some as a "very buggy state." Ew. I'm from California and hate bugs. But, in my garden last year, I did not need to use a single pesticide. (And wouldn't anyway) How you grow your plants can make all the difference with bug control. More on that later!

#4 Reason why I love my organic garden: It's pretty, and a stress reliever!
It is so beautiful to spend time in your garden (even if your garden is just a windowsill) There is just something life-giving about being around green and growing things. (My personal opinion about the cause of this is that we were created to live with God in a garden!) The beautiful colors, the heavenly fragrances, and the bees and birds that are attracted are just as wonderful as the food itself! Last year I grew beautiful 6' tall sunflowers called "Jerusalem Sunrise." They were a gorgeous lemony yellow. I had about 5 plants with flowers bursting all over each one. They were so beautiful, but what was even more fun was that they attracted these small birds that were an even brighter yellow than the flowers themselves. They did eat all of the seeds and totally ruin the plants, but they were so pretty to watch, I didn't care!

#5 Reason why I love my organic garden: It teaches you to be a good steward, and gives you an appreciation for seasons.
You'll never look at a handful of radishes at the store quite the same way again. Once you've done it yourself, you know how much work it took, so you appreciate food more. You're less likely to waste food or to buy things you don't really need. Honestly, it also makes you more thankful. You realize how little we are in control of things. You can't force any seed to grow. You can't even force it to rain. God truly is in control of all things. Just because we can go to the store in the U.S. and buy food aplenty, doesn't mean that it's available everywhere. And just because we can do this today, doesn't mean that we'll be able to tomorrow. God is truly our provider, and you can feel this more when you're appreciating all the steps that it takes to get food on your table.

I could go on and on, but let's get to the good stuff! How to do it! That's what I'll be talking about tomorrow. We'll discuss the first steps of what you need to do first to get your garden up and running. In the meantime, check out this website to find your growing zone. This will give you an idea of the time frames you're working with. See you all tomorrow!

(my concord grape plant just starting to bud!)

1 comment:

Cleo Pascal said...

My mom also has her own organic garden, and that's one of the reasons why I love going to her house. You know why? Because she grows a few herbs that can be made into alternative health medicine, and she gives me some of those herbs for my personal use. It's great, isn't it? That's why I don't grow my own garden. Ha ha!