My Herban Farm Project: Rationale for Urban Farming Right Now

My Herban Farm Project

My hubby thinks I’m a little reactionary and possibly slightly crazy. I’ve decided to convert our just-under a quarter of an acre city lot into an urban farm I fondly call my Herban Farm.

Am I just reacting to the chaos my government’s stirred up as he suspects? Perhaps, but in all honestly, I’ve been watching our economy and general culture for a couple of decades and it seems clear we’re creating a country in which being able to grow your own food and medicine is becoming¬†extremely valuable.

Wellness is heavily dependent on health, and health is heavily dependent on the lifestyle basics:

  • Diet,
  • Exercise,
  • Sleep, and
  • Hydration.

Wellness isn’t something you can just buy, like the big houses, vacations, and multiple cars our grandparents valued. Wellness comes with the quality of the choices we make. While we’re consistently making choices on a larger¬†scale that weaken the American dollar and create a greater gap between rich and poor, on an individual scale we have the power to choose one or more of the basics to focus on. For me, that choice is Diet.

Through diet, I can create greater wellness for myself and my family. Organic foods offer us fewer toxins and more nutrients, making it easier for our bodies to stay healthy. Buying a healthy diet in the form of organic foods from a grocery, coop, or even local farmers is quite expensive. Growing my own is a lot less expensive, and it offers me the opportunity to try a much greater variety of fruits an vegetables. If the economists are correct, we’re heading straight toward another recession and quite possibly a depression as bad as The Great Depression. I want to be one of the families who can afford to eat organic even if our economy crashes. An urban farm of my own makes perfect sense economically, but it’s more than just growing my own to save money.

Eating organic is something I think will become more important to general health in light of the deregulations our government is making with regard to caring for our mutual environment. All those regulations were put in place to force large companies to care for our air, water, and soil quality because they weren’t doing so. They were creating tons of pollution that caused a lot of damage to both our environment and our health. Without regulations, I expect we’ll see more pollution nation-wide, which will lead to more health problems nation-wide. I don’t want my family to be one of their statistics. Instead, I want to protect our food supply as much as we can. An Organic urban farm of my own can do that…and by growing my own and sharing with my neighbors I can even help do so for my community.

My Herban Farm Project is about learning how to produce 50 percent or more of the foods and medicines my family consumes on our little city lot. We have a variety of conditions, full sun to partial and full shade, damp to quite dry, protected to completely exposed. This little lot has a lot to offer in terms of variety. I have some challenges beyond narrowing the list of what I want to grow, like learning to manage a small flock of hens without damaging my plants or upsetting my neighbors; keeping enough open space to suit my big, black dog without missing out on opportunities to try new varieties of plants, trees, and shrubs; and figuring out how to do all of it on a super tight budget. As I reach my goal, it’ll give me the budget and freedom to spend wisely when I must. I want to be able to afford to vote with my pocket book by buying from companies who share my values and sensibilities. My Herban Farm Project will help me do that.

Given the direction our country has been heading for the past few decades, this seems like a perfectly sensible plan I probably should have acted on ten years ago. I wasn’t angry enough with the lack of power I have on this ride to do it. Seeing my government systematically stripping away rights and protections, giving money and power to folks who have long track records of caring for themselves solely, and blatantly ignoring the will of the majority of the citizens of this nation has lit my fire. I’m spitting mad right now.

So, maybe my reaction to the recent choices our country has made has fueled my quest for a Herban Farm in my own backyard, but it’s been a long time coming. My health and my family’s health are paramount to the pursuit of happiness guaranteed by my country’s constitution. To me, it seems that I’m duty-bound to do what I can to protect our health. After all, wouldn’t our founding fathers have agreed that a little rebellion, especially that which creates health and happiness for one or more families without causing harm to others, is good for the nation?

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