There are literally hundreds of reasons for sowing and planting fruit and vegetables but below are just ten reasons that I think are good for using your space to grow your own delicious food.
I’d love to hear yours – please add below 🙂
1. Food production is ultimately in our hands. If we leave it too long not only will land skills be lost but we’re going to end up with a food system that is made up of factory style farming and GM crops, inc veggies. I don’t want to appear to be dramatising but it’s really happening. So the best way of avoiding it and making our food system good again is to think small and more productive.
2. It’s fun. Finding the right plot, pot, designing your beds, swapping seeds. It’s all about enjoying yourself and enjoying the space you’ve got to use.
3. It’s not difficult. Unlike many things in life cultivating plants for food is easy. It’s not about having RHS qualifications, it’s about learning as you go along. Gently getting in tune with the area you live in, the weather, the temperatures to understand over time what works and what doesn’t grow so well.
3. It’s cheaper than shop bought goods. While it may take time setting up your plot once it’s done and crafted it means you’ve got plants growing that will taste better and be cheaper than buying from the supermarkets. What’s even better are those varieties of unusual fruit and veg that you can experiment with and will still save you money from shop bought.
4. It makes you a much better person. Cultivating, digging, planting, all these things start bring to you senses of patience, problem-solver, and peace. Just you and your space, a chance to bring about and nurture plants and flowers and satisfaction of eating your own produce. Spending time with plants is also proven to help with mental health.
5. You get to spend time outside. If you are like me a lot of time during the week is spent indoors, for some that can also mean time away from natural light. If you’ve got a reason to go outside then all the better, especially if it means being outside in all weathers. This is good for us, the cold, the wind – for short periods it’s good for our bodies to feel fresh air and even if the sun isn’t shinning to get our space ready for when it does.
6. What other hobby can you test out great tools?! From a rotavator to the latest in secateurs, the world of garden tools are as dynamic as any other industry – just check out this rather nifty growing device for your window.
7. Cultivating the space you have helps insects, birds and ultimately the whole eco-system. By growing plants you are automatically encorouging bees, beetles and other insects to come and take a wonder round your patch, if it’s got just the right amount of plants, and no pesticides the insects will set up home which then create food for other birds and mammals. You become an animal warrior 😉
8. It keeps you fit. Rather than spending the time watching TV, spending time on social network sites or snaking through boredom your cultivated space will mean you’ve got more reason to be up and about tending, watering, planting, checking for green fly. On a balcony that’s at least 30 minutes of extra activity you wouldn’t normally get.
9. You meet new people. The world of gardening, chilli growing and allotmenteering all bring with it various interactions with like minded folk. Good people that want to be part of a better growing system, people that want to grow the hottest, the biggest chillies or people that just want to swap seeds. All there to offer and support you along the way, in whatever capacity you feel most comfortable, either face to face, group meets or on-line. Just like on this blog 🙂
10. Were you going to use your space for anything else? If the only thing your balcony is used for is to look pretty or your 5 acres for for your horse to graze on then all well and good but what if you just took a tiny part of that space and turned it into something that produced top tasting radishes or old English apples? Wouldn’t that look great too?