|That's a beautiful head of cabbage, if I may say so myself!|
I harvested my first ever cabbage yesterday! I have been growing a few vegetables at a time for a few years now, but this was my first cabbage. I have been relatively successful with growing tomatoes, peppers, squash, cucumber, and various herbs; all in containers. This spring I will be trying my hand at two new things in the garden… raised bed gardening, and starting from seed. By making these two changes, I SHOULD be able to produce a lot more and spend a lot less in the process. But I must admit that I am a bit trepidatious about this foray into the unknown.
During WWII, every American was encouraged to plant a Victory Garden. The US Department of Agriculture estimates that around 20 million gardens were planted and that domestic production of fruit and vegetables equaled that of commercial vegetable production during the same period. I wonder what kind of difference we could make to improve the environment, improve our health, and alleviate hunger if we each began to grow more of our own food.
No matter how much, or how a small an outdoor space you may have… chances are you have enough space to grow some of your own food. It’s a great way to know that the food you are eating is fresh and safe. No need to worry about e-coli in your home-grown spinach! Aside from the nutritional gains of growing your own food, it’s just plain fun! I love watching the plants grow and the little tiny buds turn into growing squash, tomatoes, or peppers.
It’s also really nice to have that personal connection with your food. There is a wonderful sense of satisfaction and accomplishment making fresh food from scratch and even more so when you also took part in growing it. You may not have time to tend a large garden or the space for one, but try planting a few herbs to grow in your windowsill or if you have a patio or balcony… plant a tomato with some herbs in small containers. You could plant a salsa garden (tomato, jalapeno, cilantro) or an Italian garden of tomato, sweet bell pepper, and basil.
I'll continue to update from time to time on my gardening experiences. Believe me, if I can do this... anyone can!!!! If you’re an experienced gardener, please feel free to share your experience with those of us just starting to figure it out! And if you’ve never gardened before, give it a try… spring is just around the corner!