Why Grow Organic?
You may feel that growing your own produce is ... enough, without adding to the problems by growing them ... Well, you pays your money and you takes your choice, as they say, but for me
You may feel that growing your own produce is difficult enough, without adding to the problems by growing them organically. Well, you pays your money and you takes your choice, as they say, but for me, there are several reasons for going the whole hog:
Eat more fruit and veg for health
The British Government is always telling us to eat more healthily. They say everybody should consume a minimum of five portions of fruit and vegetables every day.
But how many chemicals are there in that much conventionally farmed produce?
Organic fruit and veg may be hard to find at a decent price. And if you do find a supplier, often the organic produce that is on offer is not very attractive. It may be better for you — but it looks horrible, not at all appetising.
So what's the solution?
A shock, and a realisation
Around about 1992, I had two young children, aged 2 and 4 years. I was trying to give them a healthy diet, and they loved carrots. Every day they would grab at least one carrot each from the vegetable rack, sometimes more. I was pleased. "They're getting good fibre, vitamins, stuff for their eyesight, and the chewing is good for their teeth," I thought.
I was watching the news one day, when a very strange item came on (like something out of a science fiction story, I thought at the time). The Government was issuing a Health Warning on... carrots!!! Apparently, because of a rise in some pest or other (I know now it was carrot fly), farmers had been using huge amounts of pesticide chemicals, so much so, that the carrots produced contained dangerous amounts. The advice was to peel them before use.
To say I was surprised by this announcement would be an understatement — stunned more like, not to say angry. My kids were being subjected to high levels of chemicals, not just from carrots, but presumably from all sorts of other supposedly 'healthy' food. And there was no way to tell: you certainly couldn't distinguish a carrot full of pesticides from one that wasn't, just by looking at it.
I also realised something else: carrots are a root vegetable. And if a root is surrounded by something, it takes it in and absorbs it, like a sponge. So peeling a carrot wasn't going to do much good, if the problem was an excessive level of chemicals.
I was living in an area with no organic retail outlets. The only supermarket was K**kS*ve. I had no transport. The only solution was to grow my own. So that is what I did — with no previous experience of gardening (apart from my cactus collection). If you've got a good enough reason, you can do anything.
That was 12 years ago now, and I haven't looked back. Not only have I grown lots of really nice food (much tastier than the shop-bought stuff), but I've had fun doing it, too.
So, if you have any experience of gardening, or none, visit the GardenZone and I will show you how to get started. Exactly what to do, in English, not garden jargon (you will get to know what the terms mean, but to start with they are too confusing).
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Frann lives in Edinburgh, Scotland. She has her own
internet marketing business and is always on
the lookout to recruit go-getters like herself.
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