Homegrown Vegetables: Get In Touch With Your Food Source.

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Not sure when or how, but we’ve become totally out of touch with our food source. How many of us have ever had the pleasure of enjoying some homegrown vegetables? I read the book Plenty and in it they said that our food travels from farm to plate about 1,500 – 2,000 miles. That’s insane and I wanted to do something about it.

This past spring I decided it was time for me to get back in touch with my food source and grow my own vegetables. Some of you might be rolling your eyes and saying, “No shot. I can’t do that. I have no space. I don’t have any experience. It’s too expensive.”

To that I say neither did I. I live in New York City on the 4th floor of an 8 story building. It took a bit of creativity on my end to pull off the ultimate urban vegetable gardens. I now have a fire escape garden and a backyard vegetable garden at my Grandmother’s in Brooklyn.

Up until I started these gardens, I had zero experience in gardening too. I just kind of experimented to see what would happen. You know what happened? I got some fresh homegrown veggies. No degrees. No books read. I just did it.

The whole experience has been great and a lot of fun. If I want a fresh salad, I go to my fire escape to harvest some lettuce and kale. It doesn’t get much fresher than that. It’s a great feeling to eat a big freshly harvested salad that you grew on your own.

Not only is it fresh, but I know exactly where it came from and what’s happened to it before I grew it. Though I didn’t start from seed, I bought the plants from a local gardener at the Farmer’s Market. She is the one who planted the seed and was with the plant from it’s beginning. When you go to a chain the employees have no clue as to what happens to the plants or seeds.

In terms of cost, they are minimal as well. I built self-watering containers using recycled materials that cost less than $5. You could also make hanging planters using soda bottles.

So getting back in touch with your food source and enjoying some homegrown vegetables is definitely possible.

If you are still hesitant, which I’m not sure why you would be, and want to get more involved in knowing where your food comes from I’d recommend joining your local CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) or food co-op.

These will help to put you in touch with the farmers and get whatever questions that you have answered by the source that is taking care of them.

What’s stopping you from growing your own?

Mike Lieberman resides in New York City and provides simple solutions for living in a complex world. Besides his own blogs, he contributes to others across the web. You can find all of his work at CanarsieBK.com and follow him on Twitter @CanarsieBK.

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