I’m not sure when gardening became such a rebellious activity, but I’m sure it happened around the same time Monsantos and GMOs made their way onto the farm and, eventually, our plates.
There has been a rash of information recently outlining why our health is being threatened, and its direct relationship to how our food is grown and served. To quote Hippocrates, “Let food by thy medicine.”
There is a terrible reason why for the first time in history our children are not expected to outlive their parents’ age, as obesity connected to processed foods is in large part the culprit. That’s sad, and it’s so unnecessary as we have control over the plate.
The Naked Chef (Jamie Oliver) is doing his part to circumvent this prediction by inviting parents and children to learn to cook meals from fresh ingredients. This knowledge alone will help save lives through life skills.
Eating real foods, in season, from local sources is one way to have control over what we feed our families, and consequently our health.
Becoming a locovore or someone who supports local food initiatives allows us to keep in touch with our food sources, and that’s why farmers markets are growing in popularity.
Taking this a step further by becoming directly involved in growing some of our own produce only steps from the back door ensures it won’t get any fresher than picking it yourself.
There are many advantages to growing your own garden not the least of which is saving money, although in today’s economic climate, that’s a no brainer.
Other benefits include:
• Pride – you’re feeding your family on this.
• Community spirit – veggie-versity goals versus hometown team.
• Learning old-new skills connecting us to our heritage.
• Self resilience during uncertain times.
• Zero carbon footprint travelling from your garden to your table.
• Local economy – buying local means helping people we know make their living.
• Taste – have you had an organic, sun ripened tomato? Nothing compares.
• Fun – the look on a kid’s face when a seed starts to grow is priceless. They’ll be hooked for life.
We, your neighbours at the South Cariboo Sustainability Society – along with the support of the Cariboo-Chilcotin Beetle Action Committee and the CRD – feel that for the reasons above, and a few more, it would be wonderful to unite both experienced and newbies alike to the joys of gardening.
We are starting a grass-roots campaign (The Rebel Garden Zone) with our Earthworm Mascot, Irma the Worma, to celebrate our Hardy Zone 2-4 growing areas from Lac la Hache to Lac Des Roches.
We’ve heard the rumours too that it’s too cold, or too this, or too that to grow anything here, but that just sounds like a challenge to us.
The more people say we can’t, we’d like you to join us in showing them that we can.
Please help us grow our seed exchange program on Facebook so our veggie-versity grows from year to year. You may be surprised at just what will grow in a Rebel Garden.
To know who is growing what, we need you to sign up online at www.southcariboosustainability.com – even if it’s just one herb pot, it all counts.
Nicole Chayka is a South Cariboo Sustainability Society director.