Growing your own food will immensely benefit your family and the planet. Your garden can provide you with fresh organic food, free of pesticides and chemicals. This will be beneficial to your health and make you more conscious about your food consumption. It will also redirect your consumption to seasonal vegetables and fruits that are less harmful to nature and will require no transportation. Intensive crop cultivation is unnatural and weakens the soil. Maintaining large productions to feed the world requires many artificial methods that exhaust the soil and its nutrients and results in intensive greenhouse emissions from transportation.
We are now so apart from nature, that sometimes we do not realise certain species cannot be available throughout the year but only in specific seasons, so distant producers must supply them. We are stimulating a very harmful cycle in food production. Fruits and vegetables taste better when they are in season and organic grown, why not adapt your habits to it?
To start your organic production, choose species that you consume frequently and give priority to the ones that would otherwise be heavy on chemicals and pesticides. You can check this here. We recommend tomatoes, strawberry, aubergine / eggplant, cucumber, broccoli, zucchini, cabbage, spinach, carrots, radishes, garlic, onions, turnip, lettuce, peppers, beans and peas. Some herbs can be grown and harvested throughout the year like basil, thyme, parsley, rosemary, coriander, dill and mint. These herbs make every food delicious and diminish the need of salt when cooking, reducing the risk of blood hypertension, stomach cancer and other diseases. You can check seasonable species at BBC Good Food website or by simply typing “seasonable vegetables” or “seasonable fruits” on Google Search.
It is important that you respect nature when cultivating your food. It is natural to have some beneficial insects around and they tend to balance themselves in case some non-beneficial ones appear. It is not uncommon that species you did not plant appear and they can be beneficial to the ones you intended to have. Observe how they affect your plants before getting rid of them. Do not get disappointed if your production is not as good as you imagined when you started and try to learn by doing.
You can learn the basics of gardening here in case you are not familiar with this activity. Prepare the soil or plant pot according to the species you chose to produce and get seeds, stems and spores to start. You can reduce your initial investment by getting those for free from neighbours and friends. Do not forget to check the seasonal species as we mentioned earlier to plan when it is best to sow them.
If you reach a level of production in which you get surplus food, you can use some natural ways to conserve it, like freezing, fermenting, making jelly, chutney and pickles. Fruits and some vegetables can be easily frozen after you wash, peel and chop them. Cabbage is great for fermenting and making the German Sauerkraut that is delicious and provides the same beneficial bacteria found in yogurts that regulate our intestines and strengthen our immunological system. You can make jelly with fruits and peppers, and salsa with surplus tomatoes and herbs. Herbs can be chopped and frozen in small amounts with olive oil in ice cube trays to be used in recipes later.
Growing your own food will not require much time or financial investment, but you should regularly check your plants to spot problems earlier, especially in the beginning. Appreciate your plants and all mental and psychological benefits they can provide you. This should be a pleasant activity to improve your health, save money and help the planet.
Are you ready to start your own food production? You can start small and be certain that nature will be happy with any little help. You will help reduce harmful intensive crop cultivation, greenhouse gas emissions and soil exhaustion. Get your gardening tools and seeds ready and be responsible for your own food! Green it yourself… Now!