I am attempting a garden again. Of course, with the last effort becoming a mid morning snack for the dogs, I have had to rethink my strategy. We have two large garden beds that were here when we moved in, but we still haven’t gotten around to building a fence. So, instead, I am patio gardening.
I dragged Christopher to a garden store last weekend and then made a second trip on my own to get what I needed. We now have planters all over, filled with compost and seeds. Christopher pointed out that I did not need to show him the progress of the arugula (which has already sprouted) three times within seventeen hours. But I can’t help it. I am fascinated by watching it all grow. I check on it several times a day.
It is interesting, though, how far removed we are from the foods we eat. Many people, including us, don’t even know which produce is in season in their area, or what their food looks like when it is coming up out of the ground.
Last night we watched a movie called “Our Daily Bread“. There is no narration and no dialogue, but it is beautifully shot and shows the machines and factories that produce our food. While humans are involved in the process, there are few. Which may be why we don’t know what our food looks like.
When my niece Kylie was about three or four she laughed at the idea of eating plants, and was surprised to learn that some of her favorite foods, tomatoes and cucumbers, fit that category. At one point she told me that eating birds was silly, not making the connection between chickens and the chicken on her plate.
I’m not the only one trying my hand at gardening. This week, Michelle Obama began work on an organic garden on the South Lawn of the White House. The plan is for the items that they grow to become a part of what they eat. This is the first official effort of this kind on Pennsylvania Avenue since Eleanor Roosevelt’s Victory Garden.
Today there were two articles in the New York Times related to food issues. “Is the Food Revolution in Season” talks about food sustainability and organic farming, as well as the availability and associated costs. Another article,”Eating Food That’s Better,Whether it is Organic Or Not,” talks about how people seem to believe that eating organic is the equivalent of being healthy, without taking into consideration that junk food can be organic.
I called my grandma today for her strawberry pie recipe. She told me about a patch of strawberries that she and my grandpa had for a few years and she is certain that one year she had almost eighty pounds worth of berries. I don’t expect that I can be quite the gardener that my grandpa was, but I am looking forward to my arugula.