As we’ve seen in this pandemic when crisis hits, standard food supply chains can get choked. Our current food supply system relies heavily on growing in many disparate parts of the country and transporting over long distances.
If you want to insure against food shortages you need local supply.
What’s more local than home grown? Nothing.
Now I’m not suggesting that it’s practical to grow or supply all of your own food (although I know people who come pretty close.)
What I am suggesting is that home gardening can solve at east a portion of your food procurement issues in crisis.
Below is Exhibit A: pictures of one day’s harvest of my cucumbers from last year and the end product, homemade pickles. Last year I harvested well over 100 cucumbers and made over 45 pints of pickles. It’s not as hard as you would think.
This weekend is Memorial Day weekend. In our household it’s traditionally the weekend we put in the garden.
I shared with you last years’ success. Now I’m gong to share this years’ failure. Below is a picture of my indoor grow-light set-up.
About a month or so ago we started a bunch of seed: peppers, eggplant, tomatoes, basil. I kept them indoors until about a week ago. We were starting to get some really good sunlight outside last week and the sprouts were looking a little stringy so I thought it would be a good move to bring them out.
Not the best move. The peppers seem to be doing OK, but the tomatoes, basil and eggplant have all suffered. I don’t think the eggplant and basil will make it. Some of the tomatoes have perked up since I moved them back inside.
Lesson: start the seeds early and wait until they are pretty hearty before taking them out.
My brother uses something called a grow tent. It’s like a mini greenhouse indoors. Keeps things well-lit AND warm. I don’t have one but maybe I should get one. My dream is to have a greenhouse. But that’s a long term project.
I’m not too worried. Starting seeds indoors is high risk but cheap. I will just buy my tomatoes, eggplant and basil plants that are already more mature. The cucumbers incidentally seem to grow great from seed alone.
Next year I will try to plan better.
Incidentally my garlic is looking like a major success already. Will fill you in on that some time soon. You win some, you lose some. But just keep learning.
Happy Memorial Day Weekend. Go do some planting!