Deciding to grow your own vegetable garden may just be the healthiest decision you've ever made! Today, life is all about going as fast as you can to get everything done in time. It's like we never get to rest and reap the rewards of time. Growing your own food can bring you peace, exercise, nutrition, friends, and a connection to nature all at once! Sinking your feet into the grass and your hands into the soil while feeling the warmth of the sun, reminds us to slow down and enjoy each moment.
Nothing beats being able to walk into your backyard, pick fresh vegetables from the ground and straight onto your plate. The taste of your own produce and the relationship you build with your own garden is unique, delicious, and somewhat romantic. Whether you have the land to grow a garden, or if you are living in an apartment, there are resources for you to grow your own food. You can start your vegetable seeds indoors with artificial lighting, or purchase already grown seedlings and plants. Don’t have a backyard? Grow on a balcony, windowsill, find a community garden, a backyard sharing program, on a rooftop, in vertical spaces and swap your harvest with your friends for more variety foods. Growing options are unlimited when it comes to growing vegetables and herbs.
Purchase your seeds from an organic seed company that provides a variety of heirloom seeds. You will see and taste flavors of plants you will never find in the conventional grocery store. Heirloom varieties also enable you to save seeds from your vegetables for the next growing season, cutting your seed costs in half. The moment a vegetable is picked from the ground, it starts to lose nutrients. Much of the produce we purchase from the grocery store is picked before it is ripe, reducing its nutrient content and flavor. Even more nutrients are lost during the shipping process from the farm, to a warehouse, to the grocery store and finally to your kitchen. Picking your own vegetables from your garden and immediately eating them eliminates this nutrient loss.
The Earth will also thank your for growing an organic vegetable garden by reducing your ecological impact on the planet. The fossil fuels used to ship our food contributes to pollution and this step is eliminated with growing a garden. Growing organically without the use of toxic pesticides and herbicides will also reduce our environmental pollution. There is no need for the use of pesticides or herbicides. Growing your own food increase the chances you will consume more vegetable content because the trip to the grocery store is not required, you don’t even have to put on your shoes!
Home vegetable gardens provide children with a connection to their food, and allows them to have hands on involvement. This will surely increase their self esteem, set them up for a healthy relationship with vegetables and provide them knowledge to start their own garden one day.
This is Maya, our good friend Joanne's daughter planting her food for the summer.
Nutrient rich plant based foods should be the staple in our diet, providing us with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fibre for optimal health. In North America diet related illnesses such as obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and even cancer are on the rise. Whole plant based foods are the best preventative medicine one can follow.
To recap here are the top 8 reasons to grow your own garden:
1. Improve your mental and physical health
2. Connect with nature
3. Get exercise
4. Relieve stress
5. Save money!
6. Improve your nutrition
7. Connect with friends, family and the community
8. Reduce your Eco footprint
Don’t know where to start? With the internet at our fingertips we have endless knowledge waiting for us to utilize. Visit a local garden center, visit gardening blogs online, pick up a gardening book or magazine, we all have to start somewhere. You can even hire companies who will build, plant, and harvest your garden for you. All you need is some soil, seeds, water, sunlight and some love. Get your green thumb on and reap the benefits of your own harvest.