After our first blog post about greening your garden practices, are you not yet convinced of the benefits to organic farming? That’s fine, because this second installment was written with the goal of illustrating all of the benefits that can come from gardening the organic way. Part 1 was designated for the “how” questions surrounding organic gardening, but in Part 2 we’ll tackle the “why” factor.
You can dish out a lot of cash on trying to eat all-organic, and that seems especially true for fruits and vegetables. This brings me to my first point in the myriad reasons why greening your garden can be so beneficial; it can save you tons of money! You know what you’re putting into the crops, and you know what you’re getting out economically (and physically). If you’re interested in growing to save you some green, check out this article from The Daily Green about the most cost-effective garden crops. Worried about not having fruits and vegetables during the winter months? Not a problem! Check out this information from GrowVeg.com to see which vegetables are best suited for different types of preserving.
The only real pitfall of organic to the pesticide-ridden alternative is shelf life; gardening guru Melissa says that “organic produce might go bad a little faster than the inorganic stuff you find at the grocery store. But, wouldn’t you rather be eating something that fresh as opposed to something that has been traveling around the country for two weeks in the back of a truck?” Yes, please. If you’ve ever tasted a fresh tomato (or enter vegetable X here), you know that there’s really no replacement for the taste you get from a home-grown crop.
It’s important to remember that while organic vegetables are good for you, they’re also much better for the environment. The EPA says that runoff water from pesticides can “kill fish and wildlife, poison food sources, and destroy the habitat that animals use for protective cover,” among other problems. Everything eventually leads to the ocean, so we need to remember that these dangerous chemicals have contagion effects on many different kinds of wildlife.
There are many positive impacts of gardening that you might not anticipate at first, but you’ll soon realize. Of course I’ve talked about how you’re doing a service to the environment and to your wallet, but did you also think about how you’re doing a service to yourself? Americans don’t spend nearly as much time outside as they used to, and gardening gets you doing a fun activity with the outdoors as a main component. You’ll get a nice workout from plotting and picking, and the added sunlight should give an endorphin buzz to your brain. Some people even consider gardening and farming a form of therapy, and it’s not hard to see why; the calm, creative atmosphere is definitely something to crave during the spring and summer months when we can all enjoy the warmer weather.
Among the many personal, environmental and economic upsides to growing your own organic vegetables, Melissa’s main takeaway from working at the world’s largest soil rooftop farm perhaps offers the greatest benefit of all. “At some point in life, everyone should have the unique and gratifying experience of growing your own food and taking full responsibility of some of your sustenance from seed to plate.” Personally, I couldn’t agree more.