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OTHER ITA SITES:
Beat Back High Food Prices!
When I was a young boy, most families in my hometown had a victory garden, or an allotment, as they are called by the British. At that time they were used to help the war effort, in as much as food shortages were quite acute. By 1945, it is estimated, 40 percent of the food grown in this country was turned out on these small family plots. This allowed the big farms to feed the troops and also helped to keep rising food prices in check due to food rationing which was in effect at that time.
Anybody who has grocery shopped recently has noticed the price increases in all the food now selling in your supermarket; milk, eggs, produce and fruit are all starting to skyrocket in price. This is a trend that will probably continue due to the demand for biofuels plus greater demands from India and China and other emerging countries for more fresh fruits and vegetables.
Nowadays large-scale farming is rather difficult in our urban landscape; however small-scale production works because it is so dynamic and flexible. A small-scale farm such as your backyard will fit it with your abilities and will not require energy and petroleum consuming machinery Your garden can also be organic if you so please. This will insure your family is getting the safest and best produce available if you remember to follow good gardening practices.
Backyard farmers will never eliminate the need for large-scale farms, yet an increasing number of small growers can help consumers stretch their budgets and be more ecologically friendly by reducing the "carbon footprint". By banding together, communities or neighborhoods can create systems of trading or selling their excess produce to neighbors or local restaurants. If your local zoning codes allow it, you might even consider raising a few chickens or rabbits.
The main reason to raise your own produce however, is the quality and the flavor of the vegetables you grow yourself. Nothing could be fresher or safer then what you have just picked from your own garden. Knowing that you have grown your own food as well as receiving some exercise as well as a good dose of sunshine is all positives. Cost considerations may not be high on your list, at least for now, but who knows what the future will bring. There is also great concern regarding the safety of our food as we are painfully aware from the latest headlines.
If you are considering growing your own produce, start small. A 20 x 25 foot plot will provide enough for a family of four. If the garden is too large, it will certainly suffer from a lack of attention when the gardening becomes a chore and not a pleasure. Pick a location that receives 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight daily and is near a water supply. Fencing is also recommended to keep animal pests away.
There are many places on the web go into great detail on gardening, so if you are a novice or need help with almost any problem, get on line and start researching. I am sure you will find the information you need to join your own green revolution.
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