As the season and weather in the northern hemisphere transitions into spring it is normal for many people to plan and plant a spring garden. With the global changes happening, a spring garden and Earth Day reminds us of the importance of connecting back to nature and sustainable foods. All we need is the earth, sun and water to grow our own food and improve our health.
If you have not done so yet, now is a great time to make the commitment to help your self and family with a spring garden. It is a great way to enjoy the many health benefits and tasty treats. Imagine planting and enjoying an edible harvest of beans, flowers, fruits, green plants, herbs, seeds, spices, vegetables and vines.
After visiting a family in California and looking at their back yard it seemed natural to share some of the tips we discussed. Our discussions centered on how to plan, shop and prepare more delicious and nutritious meals while spending less money. Anyone can raise a happier and healthier family with a minimum investment of energy, money and time by discovering the benefits of growing your own food.
Beginning with a spring garden and then adjusting for summer, fall and winter it is possible to have some fresh harvest all year long There are also ways to preserve surplus foods for eating later.
Your garden can be planted in your yard or in pots on the patio, balcony or even inside an apartment, home or a greenhouse. While every climate and situation is different there are probably dozens of plants you could grow that yield something great to eat.
Creating Gardens in Small Spaces
One option is an indoor garden with minimum space requirements that uses small containers, jars or trays to produce herbs, micro-greens, sprouted beans, grains, or seeds. With very basic equipment and time you can provide very delicious and highly nutritious food and sprouts.
A simple list of herbs to grow could include herbs such as:
Or try creating a seed garden by growing some:
- oat groats
- wheat grass
Even mung bean and soy bean sprouts can be grown fairly easily.
The next choice is a balcony or patio garden with the plants in containers and pots. With some creativity and ingenuity you may be able to design a vertical system that uses minimum space for maximum yield. Some people have been creative and developed a hydroponics garden that uses only water and natural fertilizer to grow a variety of produce.
Gardens as Family & Community Projects
With a yard you may be able to change the landscape to accommodate a full garden. This way you could focus some energy and time on the culinary and therapeutic benefits of gardening. It is a great project for the family and helps teach children the value of caring for the plants in the garden in order to eat fresh produce.
When they are involved in the process and connected to the food they eat it helps shift their awareness back to the importance of plant foods to sustain life on Earth. They may even have some surplus to sell and earn some money.
Another option is for a group of families to join together and establish a community garden. You can check with your local community to determine if any land is available for community based gardens. You can also join a group of other like minded individuals to rent some land from a farmer. You might be able to barter between the group and farmer by offering services or time to provide an exchange of value. This creates an economical win / win situation for everyone.
You may even decide to contract directly with a farmer and create an organic co-op to grow and distribute the fruits, vegetables and greens directly from farm to market. These are becoming even more popular as a way to enjoy fresher, more nutritious and naturally ripened foods while reducing the environmental impact and carbon footprint.
Beauty and Benefit
During my travels in Australia, Canada, Caribbean, Japan, Mexico, UK and US, I have observed some amazing ingenuity in creating great gardens of beauty and beneficial food plants.
A few tips worth mentioning are for you to avoid using railroad timbers, treated wood or old tires which may leach harmful chemicals and compounds into the soil. These could be absorbed by the plants and contaminate them. Also be sure to avoid using harmful chemicals and fertilizers to treat the soil.
Use natural compost and mineral rich sources to build the soil. Finally it is important to design your garden with natural insect inhibitor plants (i.e. marigolds, onions, garlic) and to use other natural methods to control insects. You may also be able to grow some fruit or nut bearing trees for additional harvest.
It is obvious that are many ways to plant a spring garden for Earth Day or just the satisfaction of enjoying more plant based fresh foods and getting the benefit of adding fresh medicinal foods to your diet is rewarding. You are only limited by your beliefs, creativity and desire as you take the first small step and plant a spring garden. As your experience and confidence grows the garden can expand over time. Remember you are what you eat so consider the benefits of a small spring garden to provide more delicious and nutritious foods to improve your happiness and health.
Next week the Great NEWS Letter will share: Spring Flowers
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My Wish for You is Health, Love, Abundance and Time to Enjoy Them.
To Your Perfect Health,