Grow Your Own

Growing your own food is like printing your own money…Ron Finley



As I recall it, growing food was the norm where I came from. My grandparents had always gardened, and so did my parents. Our food all came from the garden near our back door. In addition there were fruit trees and berry bushes, peaches, apples, lemons, nectarines, black currants and raspberries. I don’t ever remember a day we went hungry. And during summer my father salted beans, bottled tomatoes by the ton it seemed and preserved peaches and apples for use over the winter months. He also made sauerkraut in an old stoneware mason jar and large preserving pans of pickle, relish and jam. As also did most of our neighbours, with much surplus produce being swapped over the back fence. My father came from a large family where it seems they all, not just the girls, learned to cook, not standard for their era.

Vanessa's Edible Garden
Vanessa’s Edible Garden in Taihape, in the northern Rangitikei

Vanessa, a blogger from Taihape turned her parents front garden into a food space, pictured above, especially to show folks where food comes from … not necessarily the supermarket. Check out her blog HERE.

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Strawberries in a Planter

To start a garden you don’t need a lot of money. Expensive timber raised surrounds are great if you can afford them, but a spade really is all you need to get started. There are even no-dig gardens if you can’t dig, and if your space is really limited, you can grow veg in containers and tubs. Or as Vanessa has built above there, a few rocks and you’re away. Not to reinvent the wheel, check out what other towns have done with respect to beautifying their ugly or bland town spaces by growing food there for everybody to eat. Pam Warhurst describes quite humourously, how she and friends turned unused land in their town of Todmorden in the north of England, into communal vegetable gardens. Invented whilst sitting around the kitchen table, their venture has become known globally … they were even invited to Christchurch after the earthquake of 2011 to assist with rebuilding ideas. They call it ‘propaganda gardening’ and have placed gardens at the railway station, the health centre, in front of the Police Station and even in the cemeteries. People come from all over the world to ‘poke around’ as she puts it … even when there’s nothing much growing. The whole idea has expanded into a tourist trail through the town, the creation of new small industries from local produce and a fantastic reinvention of community where everybody can get involved. ‘And we’re just volunteers’ she says, and ‘it’s only an experiment’. You can visit their website HERE

Note: for latest updates on gardening and Wally Richards’ articles scroll to the bottom. Additionally find related articles by using the ‘categories’ box on the left of the page, the tag cloud to the right or the search box, top right.

Pam Warhurst: How we can eat our landscapes

Links to other articles on the  amazing Todmorden ‘experiment’:

 …And this will inspire you no end, talk about transforming a community! 

Some Links to NZ Gardening Sites:

Garden News: This is the site of Palmy’s gardening guru Wally Richards. Wally is contactable by phone or email to answer any gardening queries … his site is an invaluable mine of information.                                                                                      Wally’s contact number is  0800 466464 

Read Wally’s weekly articles featured in the Rangitikei Mail:

Edible Back Yard: This site is in the Horowhenua district.  … “Kath Irvine is a permaculture designer who has been designing & managing food gardens since the late 1990’s…”  You’ll find on this site, information on when to plant what plus many useful recipes for your produce.

Here’s an awesome Facebook page called  ‘Grow Kai Organic’ … here’s the link:

 Latest Updates on Growing your Food:

How to Cut Your Water Bill in Half Irrigating With Ollas – for the Gardeners 2 Sept 2015
Episode 68: Starting Small | Jackie Beyer’s New Gardener Success Tips   10 August 2015

Organic gardening tips … starting from scratch

Community Gardens are Catching On for Kiwis ….10 April 2015
More on how we’re being too clean … and compromising our health

7 April 2015   “Our immune systems were designed to cope with a germy world…. Article links HERE

How to build a no-dig garden … no kidding!

4 April 2015  Learn how to make a garden without having to dig … and learn the value of soil microbes ….. Article links are HERE

Wally Richards’ Weekly Article: For your garden plus updates on Glyphosate, the Bees and Smart Meters

4 April 2015  ….   Read at SOURCE

Wally Richards’ Weekly Column: This Week, WHO’s latest announcement on Glyphosate

29 March 2015   Here is Palmerston North’s gardening guru Wally Richards’ weekly garden news & commentary. Wally gives us his thoughts on the latest findings from WHO … “Glyphosate probably causes cancer”….Read HERE

A Vacant Lot In Wyoming Will Become One Of The World’s First Vertical Farms

28 Feb 2015  By Mihai Andrei “…. Not something ‘necessary’ at this point in NZ with its wide open spaces, however, inspiring nevertheless for those high rise city dwellers who want to get started growing their own food  & avoiding transport cost & pollution. It is very do able. From ZME Science site HERE

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