It’s (thankfully) almost that time of year again! The seed catalogues have been mailed out and green thumbs across the country are starting to plot and figure out what they’ve got left over and what they want to try for the new season ahead!
I think gardening is definitely in my genetics, as both of my grandmothers were avid gardeners not only to feed their families, but to enjoy nature around them as well.
This is my greenhouse garden from a few years back!
Here are a few reasons why I think YOU should plant a garden this year!
It gives you hope that winter will end
Now this winter hasn’t been as bad as last winter (knock on all the wood) so thankfully I haven’t been feeling quite as desperate to move away to a tropical island lately, but having a light at the end of the tunnel and planning for spring and warm summer weather is such a positive note to focus on. And if you choose to start seedlings inside, it’s so nurturing to watch life grow so quickly before your very eyes!
It gets you into connection with your food
THIS IS KEY. It’s unfortunate these days that so many of us are not only disconnected with our bodies, but with our food and the experience of nature as a whole! I’ve been pushing this agenda HARD lately, as I think that connection with your food is a huge part of us being TRULY well.
So many people, myself included, don’t have ANY clue where our food comes from, who our farmer is and now the plants were nourished and grown. I believe that this disconnect is part of the reason why so many people are so stressed out and overwhelmed.
Vitamin D is good for so many things
Not only will growing your own food get you tasty, delicious food, it also gets you out into the sun. Now like everything, you can obviously get too much of it, but having some skin exposed to the sun allows our bodies to produce vitamin D, which is important for everything from your immune system, to your hormones to your mood!
If you’re going to be out for a long time, get yourself a good sunscreen (that’s NOT full of toxicant chemicals). Check out the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep website for options!
Home grown food always tastes better
Have you been lucky enough to get your hands on a home grown carrot or some shelling peas ever?! They. Are. SO. DELICIOUS! There’s nothing like home grown rhubarb pie or borscht or whatever you make with your produce. This is a big reason why I garden!
It’s a fun (and challenging!) hobby
Now we all find pleasure in different things, but I get such joy out of planting seeds, seeing them come up, nourishing them while they’re little babies and seeing what beautiful produce you can grown at home! There are also absolutely challenges that come with learning to garden…from proper crop rotation, to fertilizing to pest management without using toxicant chemicals, but the challenge is good for our minds and a good skill set to have in case there’s ever a world apocalypse (haha!).
What if I can’t?!
There honestly aren’t a ton of reasons that you can’t do a little bit RIGHT NOW from home! If you don’t already have a garden plot, click here and I’ll share some ideas on what else you can try!
What to do if you don’t have a garden at home
I know this problem VERY well and have actually done all of the below in the past. They all have their benefits and struggles, but ANY way you can get gardening will be fantastic.
Dig up your yard!
Lucky for me I had my partner to do all of the heavy digging but we did it and produced a WONDERFUL garden that year! I took for a while for sure, but it was absolutely worth it. Also what the heck are lawns for anyway?! They’re a waste of good garden space to me!
This was the lawn we turned into garden!
Get some garden boxes or pots
If you don’t have a huge yard to dig up (or don’t want to), then getting some pots or having some garden boxes installed are another really easy way to jump into gardening. Even if you start with one tomato plant, it’s a great step in the right direction.
We may or may not have about 50 pots now 😀
Plant windowsill herbs
This is so minimal and simple that literally anyone can do it no matter the type of home they’re in. They even sell units that come with their own lights if you don’t have good window access handy.
Here’s my cat Luna enjoying a little wheatgrass in my aquaculture set-up (you can also see my fish Finn if you look closely enough!)
Find a local community garden you can plant in
We did this last year and it was great! We stumbled across a community garden at a senior’s centre and luckily we didn’t have to be a senior to get a plot! It was a great way to meet some of the local neighbours and gave us access to a full garden that we grew in addition to pots we had on our back deck.
Our community garden plot last summer!
Sign up for a local CSA
CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture and basically you pay a farmer in the spring, then they deliver fresh produce to you weekly in the summer! This is something that I’ve done multiple times, across multiple cities and it’s really lovely. If you can’t or don’t want to put time into growing your own food, I honestly believe this is the next best option. Knowing who your farmer is and specifically where your food came from is a HUGE step in the right direction.
The variety is often amazing in CSA boxes!
Are you going to grow a garden or plant anything this year? Definitely let me know so we can share tips and tricks!