Down the Garden Path: One Small Step Toward Self-Sufficiency

There’s something so satisfying about planting, growing, harvesting, preparing, and eating our own food. And having a garden is an excellent way to experience the joy of nature in our own backyard as well.

The benefits to growing our own food are numerous: Being outdoors, physical exercise, eating nutritious food without artificial additives or chemicals, supporting healthy ecosystems, reducing dependence on the commercial food system, and just having space and time to ponder life’s greatest meaning are just a few.

Last year I downsized my entire life and left the city to live in a small rural community, where the surrounding culture is farming to the core. The move itself was sudden and stressful, and the garden was my oasis as I transitioned, as was the helpful and welcoming neighbourly advice from the local community. I threw myself into planting the already established plot on my new property with the intention of an experimental year, and was amazed at not only the abundance of food it gifted, but the rejuvenating impact it had on my physical and mental health as well. Now, almost exactly a year later, I’m diving into round two, considering all the lessons from the previous year – what worked, what didn’t, what will change, what will be maintained.

A few hard landscaping projects are on the table for this year as well, including a proper compost bin and some fencing. Further out I’ll be looking at establishing a small apiary, and even longer term a few chickens. But all in good time.

In the meantime, the last few weeks have been filled with planning and indoor seed starts. I’ve decided on my 12 staple foods with the intention of extending the storage capacity to a year. What a joy after a long, dark winter.

I can’t wait for the ground to warm, to breathe in the crisp fresh air, hear the cacophony of spring birdsong, feel the dirt in my hands, all the while contemplating and meditating on the glorious gift and miracle of life and abundance and love.

* * * * *

Seeds and Gardens

If words are seeds, 

let flowers grow 

from your mouth,

not weeds. 

If hearts are gardens, 

plant those flowers

in the chests of the ones

who exist around you. 

— R.H. Swaney

* * * * *

Blessings to you all,


One response to “Down the Garden Path: One Small Step Toward Self-Sufficiency”

  1. Live Free Offgrid Avatar

    Love it
    This article is a great reminder of the many benefits of growing our own food and having a garden. It’s inspiring to read about the author’s personal journey and how they’ve found joy and rejuvenation in this process.
    Live Free Offgrid

    Liked by 1 person

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