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The case for gardening

WHEN I stop and think about life – and I mean really think about it – I sometimes wonder, “How on God’s green earth did it all get so complicated?”


I must confess, that I often consider going back to basics – before “civilization”. Not like Tarzan or anything, but like – how was it all intended? Some of our ‘enlightened’ thoughts just don’t make sense to me. For example, if Banting is the way to eat, then why did God create potatoes?

And before I go down the road of anti-depressants, I think about diet, exercise, and time management.

So if we consider life before “civilization”… as in, God says: “Welcome to Earth. Enjoy your stay.”

What does one do? I imagine looking around, admiring the beauty of it all, soaking in the sunshine, breathing in the clean air, enjoying a scenic tour…

…and then the hunger sets in. Your body needs energy.

There are no supermarkets. Just you and the earth. Like it was intended.

That’s right, I’m talking about gardening.

I know, I know… call me a tree hugger if you want, but there is something hugely rewarding about getting your own crop going. Living off the land, rather than living off Pick n Pay or Spar or Woolworths.

I’m no expert, and I honestly have no clue most of the time with this stuff. I really like the concept of square foot gardening. So we tried it out.

Our own square-foot garden.
Our own square-foot garden.

Imagine what you could do with four square feet of garden? That is literally the size of a coffee table. Look around your house, and consider putting a square foot garden (the size of your coffee table – that’s all!) on your patio or in your back verandah in place of your coffee table.

Now consider this: you could grow two weeks’ worth of vegetables in that.

And consider this: your neighbour could grow two weeks’ worth of vegetables in that.

And so could the five houses in your street.

So then, you decide you’ll swop some of that excess spinach in your own garden for three of your neighbour’s butternut in his garden. And then some of your baby tomatoes you can exchange for the other neighbour’s lettuce.

And before you know it, the neighbourhood has… grown it’s own vegetables.

Let’s be honest – we’ll not be able to do without the convenience of Woolworths or Pick n Pay…

…but just one month, I would love to NOT have to go and spend money there. I would LOVE it ALL to come from my own ‘hood.

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