How to start your own victory church garden
Why Not Start a Victory Garden?
With our economy in complete disarray and a ton of "frugal living" tips flooding the Internet everyday - more and more people are getting back to the basics - including gardening. One topic that is starting to get alot more attention is the old idea of starting a Victory Garden.
Victory gardens are nothing new. They have been around since World War l and World War ll when the United States government encouraged it's citizens to plant gardens in an effort to support the war effort. Rising to the challenge, millions of citizens planted their own gardens. In 1943 alone there were over 20 million victory gardens in the United States and the harvest from the victory gardens accounted for almost a 1/3 of all the vegetables that were consumed that year. Pretty surprising statistics, huh? Besides being considered a national duty, victory gardens also encouraged community gathering and participation (gee maybe we could learn alot from that idea, huh?)
Maybe returning to the basics is not such a bad idea.... save money, get to know your neighbors, exercise, eat fresh healthy vegetables....not so bad, right?
In World War l and ll Victory Gardens Were All the Rage
The Community Church of Hayward Victory Garden
As women's ministry leader for our church, one of the first projects I have tackled is to start a victory garden for our own church. I am fortunate that in the City of Hayward we actually already have a local community garden. Although the garden has been there many many years, the thought had never really occurred to me to actually have a plot at the garden. That changed however when church members were tossing around ideas about projects we could sink our teeth into. One such project that immediately blossomed was the idea of having a community garden plot for our church. A special spot where we could work the land, spend time together, and connect with our local community.
So the official Victory Garden of the Community Church of Hayward was born.
Full of Weeds but Our Victory Garden
Victory Garden With a Path
The Start of Our Victory Garden
To start our own victory garden the first thing we had to do was secure a plot at the local community garden - and of course enlist members of the church that were interested in participating. Since this is such a new venture, we haven't got far yet as we just got our plot less than 2 weeks ago ( yes I know we have to get cracking at planting)
Because our former plot owner had neglected the plot, there is a harvest of very tall weeds at the present site. Underneath however is some very very fertile ground. In the pictures here you can see how high the weeds are. After the latest rain we had though the weeds were relatively easy to pull out. Instead of whacking them down with a machete I decided to remove the weeds the correct way - with a shovel, so I could also get the roots out (no sense having them grow back, that would defeat the purpose)
So armed with my dads trusty shovel I made a path through the weeds yesterday (hey at least it's a start, right? ) I have now claimed "victory" over some of weeds and at least and have a pathway to walk through.
There is course alot more work to do but at least we have started our Victory Garden. Many of us, including our friends and family, are looking forward to working in the garden and reaping the harvest. As our journey continues I will be posting additional articles about our experiences with the Community Church of Hayward Victory Garden. It's sure to be a fun project and one that you might want to try in your own patch of land!
(Dorsi Diazis a freelance professional writer and an avid gardener)