Monday, 31 January 2011

Digging It

If we want to be free of the Control System that tries to regulate every aspect of our lives, then we should start by taking charge of our own food supply. Stands to reason that if/when the economy goes down there'll be a lot of people wondering why all the food in the supermarkets isn't being restocked. Somebody once said (and I can't be sure who or the exact timeline) that we're only 36 or 48 hours away from food riots after the shops empty out. Getting to know a local farmer or two before we get to that stage would be a good idea, better still would be learning how to grow your own produce now. Use any space you can around where you live, even a box on a balcony or window ledge will do, or maybe put your name on the council list to get an allotment although it's likely you'll have to wait a good while to get a plot.

February's a good month to start planting up and planning for the summer and autumn.
I have it on good authority from one of the most green-fingered friends I know ;-) that in February
- indoors - you can start some chilli peppers, and grow them in a warm sunny spot...
- outdoors - you can sow parsnips, broad beans, sweet peas, early peas can also chit (sprout) some potatoes for planting out later at the end of March or early April. You can also plant individual cloves of garlic, though not anywhere that's too wet.

I had a go at growing some veg in growbags on my small east-facing patio last year - not terribly successfully I have to admit but it's all a learning process. You've got to watch out for the slugs n' snails if you're at ground level (my growbags were up on some metal framed garden chairs which seemed to protect them from the pesky molluscs) and also the eggs of the Cabbage White butterfly which will hatch out and nobble yer greens if you don't put a net over and around them.

It's amazing how much you can produce if you really put a lot of time and care into it - have a look at what this family is doing. OK, they're in California where they're not exactly short of sun and the range of fruit and veg that it's possible to grow is more extensive, but still...grow local, eat local. It's likely that what you can grow locally can be better suited to your diet anyway.

1 comment:

  1. mmm... time to get growing!! hope to get down to my allotment soon, and plant some broad beans. j x