To grow or not to grow, that is the question. The answer is yes!
It’s just more convenient, seems cheaper and takes less work and planning to go to the grocery store to buy some herbs and veggies for your family. Why bother fighting the birds and pests to protect your harvest, why not just pop to the local shops for produce?
Let me tell you why I started gardening, you might relate. It wasn’t just for the strawberries (my original patch). It was for my sanity, to get reconnected with my roots, my heritage and my family. I had 2 little girls and I was emotionally, mentally and physically exhausted. I wanted to give them a place to play, to grow and eat fresh food at their fingertips. I wanted to feel productive. I needed to just breathe. So, I started with a 1x2m patch. It started with some strawberries from my Mum and grandparent’s farms and added some silver beet, tomatoes and herbs. Nurturing this patch nourished my heart. It fed me as I watered it when kids in bed, it gave me a sense of pride and feeling of accomplishment and digging in the soil (with good compost) released my happy within (also known as the hormone serotonin *). This patch awaked my soul.
These days, we are aware of the price we pay for convenience. While we might be buying ‘cheap’ produce, at the cost of the environment around us. To buy conventional food from your average store and fruit shop, they come wrapped in plastic and are sprayed to grow pest free and to preserve their shelf life. To buy organic produce that hasn’t been sprayed and is free from packaging might not suit your family budget. So, what’s the answer? Grow you own! These are thoughts not to depress you but inspire you. You can make a difference, and it won’t cost you the earth!
Think about how much we spend to educate our children. We pay for school fees, excursions, dancing, swimming, music lessons and sport as well as entertainment. How much are you willing to spend to invest in your children’s health and future? It can be a minimal cost, or you can get all decked out.
By eating locally and homegrown foods, you are giving your family the best nutrition they need to grow. A healthy garden is full of good microbes that keep your family healthy. Working and playing in the soil in the sunshine is good for the soul as well as some vitamin D! It is an awesome family activity that every age can be involved. I remember gardening with bub in the Ergo, with toddlers ‘helping’, chatting with the 4-year-old playing fairy gardens and now working side by side to create our family patch. My Mum and I love to garden together and have a good old chin-wag! Imagine your teens needing to burn off some steam after school, send them to turn the compost! Now is the time to get your whole family involved and I’m here to show you how easy is can be!
Whether you want to create a small edible garden, salad bar, kitchen herb garden, a family plot for the basic veggies or an orchard, big or small, let just start!
‘The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago, the second best time is now’ ~Chinese Proverb~
If you have the desire to grow your own produce and would like some more guidance, DirtMum offers packages to suit every budget. For your own backyard and family, schools, preschools or community centres, DirtMum is all about kitchen garden education. Feel free message and follow on Instagram, Facebook or email firstname.lastname@example.org
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