My Modern Victory Garden

20 05 2008

Victory Gardens were promoted by the US government during WWII as a way for families to deal with the rising cost of food– and, food shortages. It was patriotic to have a garden producing food for the family. Communities sometimes used vacant lots and those with property planted gardens.

I’ve planted my first Victory Garden.  Unlike the Victory Gardens from the WWII era, my garden is designed to be beautiful as well as functional. Companion plants are also taken into consideration although they didn’t mandate the layout. (I’ll get more into companion plants in another post but they are plants that use different nutritional parts of soil and therefore grow well together– that’s really simplistic but you get the drift.)

The most important goals of this garden are to provide food for my family and my parents (who live in a condo) therefore saving money and reducing our footprint on the earth.  It’s organic. I’m learning about composting. While I doubt that this year I’ll be able to, my goal is to be able to set up a booth at the local farmer’s market– so, I’m growing a lot of unique vegetables– like five varieties of carrots from Seed Savers International and Heritage tomatoes.  Things that most people won’t have in their gardens and I hope will be attractive to gourmet cooks.

This is a learning process and I’m documenting my failures and successes.  Much of the ground I have taken for this was grass– a nice ground cover but, how much of it do you really need? A little room for the kid and the dogs, right? (I digress.)  Anyway, I’ve already missed the boat with the carrots… you’re supposed to put them in as soon as the ground is thawed but, I just got them in yesterday so it’ll be mid August before we get our first taste. Learning curve, right?

I’ve done three beds with weed-matted and mulched walks between them which are modeled after German kitchen gardens although this is much larger than the typical kitchen garden. There will be a row of berry bushes dividing it from the rest of the back yard and a fence separates it from the front yard. I’m experimenting with herbs between vegetables– like rosemary next to carrots and basil next to lettuce and spinach. My hope is that it will affect the flavor. We’ll see since there isn’t any pollination I don’t know if it will matter.

My next project is to get water barrels set up to water this garden and greater decrease our family’s footprint and decrease the cost of growing this garden.

There is something good about a garden. Watching things grow from a tiny seed, getting down on my knees to pull weeds and watering in the evening. It somehow cleanses the grit of real life.

Viva La Gardening Revolution!!




3 responses

20 05 2008

YOU GO GIRL! I’m so impressed! I’ve always wanted to have a food garden, but have only gotten as far as herbs. And now we’re in the land of HOT, so many things will not work without too much water to make it just silly. So I’m supportive AND jealous! I’ll take some of those heirloom tomatoes, please. There’s nothing like tomatoes right out of the garden. Yum.

Thanks, Darcy! Let me remind you of the miserable cold… there are advantages to the Land of the HOT! 🙂 I’m going to do some food saving– you’ll have to remind me to send you some dried tomatoes– fantastic for cooking and you can keep ’em forever! There are patio tomatoes you could try… don’t know much about desert gardening…

27 05 2008

Wonderful! We’ve had a medium sized garden for several years, but this year we did the same as you, expanded it with a real intention of supplying a lot of our own food. And I confess we didn’t plant our carrots till this week either! but the peas went in in April, at least (not St. Patrick’s Day like they say but hey I am NOT planting in the snow, huh?)

So pray for rain and pass the Miracle Gro. 🙂

30 05 2010

A local nursery renamed these from Victory Gardens to Prosperity Gardens. It’s good to see more people getting back to this. I’ll pass on the Miracle Gro, however. I don’t want to feed my family chemicals. Too many good organic fertilizers out there that do a way better job!

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