Organic Gardening: A Holistic Approach to Food Production
The organic or natural food garden follows the Life cycle from beginning to end. The natural or organic gardener experiences and partakes of all the stages from birth to rebirth.
The organic gardener plants the seed, which may have been saved by the gardener, from the previous year’s crop. The seed is planted in the soil; the gardener has tended by adding organic material from the compost bin, where the gardener puts the food scrapes from the dinner table.
The scraps are the bits and pieces of the vegetables the gardener used to cook the supper he or she ate and shared with family or friends.
The compost is used to enrich the soil which provides both food for the family and future seeds for next year’s garden.
There is no beginning and no end but a continuous circle that moves through the seasons with all the partners (human and many others) playing their roles in the dance.
Time expended in the garden is an investment in the future and an acknowledgement and appreciation of the past while being firmly rooted in the present.
The seed contains the genetic material it inherited from the previous generation and will develop into a tomato or bean at some point in the future; now, in the present it needs the gardener to place it in the soil which will help feed it; in a location where the sun can reach enough. The gardener will also need to provide the water the seed must have to grow and to, one day in return, either contribute to a family meal or provide seeds for a future garden.
There are many lesson we can learn and share through time devoted to growing things; while there is much that may be discovered no matter what you grow, growing food provides the most complete education as it moves the gardener through the Life cycle and enables her or him to be an actor rather than a just a consumer.
I grow plants just for the sheer joy of doing so; of watching them poke their heads above the soil and reach upward. I grow food because I like my food to be fresh and growing your own is as fresh as it gets; I also like to be aware that I am part of something that sis greater than myself, but, a something, where my Self plays an important role
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I am not talking about growing hydroponically which is an option but using natural light to keep your family supplied in some fresh produce all year round.