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September 22, 2010


Terry Oliver

Hi Joyce,
Just spent the last half hour playing catch-up with your recent posts.
We, too have been plagued with some gardening disasters this year. A huge crop of fava beans got some black rust type disease which wiped them out. One night I forgot to close the fenced veggie garden and the deer got in and demolished all the strawberry plants overnight. And finally my burgeoning crop of heritage tomatoes was struck by tomato blight and the entire crop rotted on the vines.
Hard to be philosophical at times like that. But it made me think how vulnerable we are to crop failure at any time. In our case, there were plenty of other suppliers in our community to buy produce from but as peak oil bites deeper and we don't have the abundance so easily available as now, crop failures will be the stuff of nightmares. It's happening already in many areas of North America, not just in 3rd world countries.
Our reliance on our gardens will become less of a hobby and more of a life support system.
What it also made me realise is that gardening skills and experience take time to acquire and time is running out. We need to think Victory gardens like they did in World War 2 and gather as much knowledge as we can to prevent future crop failures. There is much for us to learn and pass on to our kids and grandkids.
And keeping fit enough to do all this becomes ever more important. So good luck with your ballet classes. You've made me think it's time to get back to my Tai Chi class again.
Regards, Terry

Joyce Emery

Terry, I couldn't agree with you more! Thanks for sharing your crop failures and the warning they pose.

I'm lucky my life isn't completely dependent on what I can grow. I know if I had to produce a substantial portion of my yearly caloric needs by my own labor, the hobby garden days would be over and my daily life would be vastly different.

We home gardeners can work in concert with the community gardens springing up in so many places, and with commercial farmers who are developing sustainable farming methods.

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