For Father’s Day, here is some gardening wisdom, in honour of my own father and my children’s father and life partner, both talented gardeners who love to visit and revisit their garden “kingdoms”:
I used to visit and revisit it a dozen times a day, and stand in deep contemplation over my vegetable progeny with a love that nobody could share or conceive of who had never taken part in the process of creation. It was one of the most bewitching sights in the world to observe a hill of beans thrusting aside the soil, or a rose of early peas just peeping forth sufficiently to trace a line of delicate green. ~Nathaniel Hawthorne, Mosses from and Old Manse
The changing global climate related to unchecked burning of fossil fuels threatens food security, livelihoods and the environment worldwide but particularly those who are already most vulnerable. This summer, we are seeing this in the extreme weather events that have destroyed food crops in Pakistan and Russia.
Here in North America most of us take our food system and security for granted. It’s hard to imagine a time when we can’t buy apples from New Zealand and plums from Chile in the middle of winter. But climate change, and the end of cheap oil, will dramatically change our current food system. The good news is that our present method of delivering and growing food is relatively new, having developed in rich industrialized nations over the last 50 years. The “old-fashioned”, more local ways of growing and preserving food are still within living memory, even in North America and Europe. Human beings are also infinitely creative. Here is a video on the Windowfarms project, one response to the need and desire of urban dwellers to have access to fresh produce they’ve grown themselves. After viewing the video, I now know what I’m going to do with the windows in my daughters’ bedrooms when they leave for university in September!