Growing your own garden is a great way to have access to a variety of fresh and delicious vegetables and fruit. In fact, research has shown that gardeners eat more vegetables and fruit than non-gardeners. What if you are not an experienced gardener? If you’re interested in starting your own garden, or expanding your usual plants, check out the Food Inventory at foodcoreLGL.ca for places where you can buy plants, seeds or participate in seed exchanges. It also has many resources and information on gardening and growing a variety of different foods.
Some people are happy to learn from internet resources but many people learn best by doing. One solution is to participate in community gardening. Foodshare.net says “The only hard and fast rule of what a community garden is and how and what is grown comes from the participants.” They go on to say: “Community gardens come in many different shapes and sizes. They can be large or small, on the ground or on rooftops, in plots or in planters. And they can be a mix of all of these things. Some are communal, where everyone shares the work and the harvest. Some have separate, individual plots (allotments) for each gardener, and some are a combination of these two styles, encouraging gardeners to join together to grow some of the crops communally.”
In addition to providing food, belonging to a community garden can provide you and your family, students, co-workers or neighbours the opportunity to learn about growing your own food and then you get to eat it. In addition to the fresh food, community gardens contribute to our health through physical activity out in the fresh air, a chance to meet new people, have some quality family time and to be connected to your community – no matter how you define community.