We are entering prime time in Phoenix to grow your own organic food outdoors. Whether you love to cook and fresh tastes best, or you are concerned about food safety or supply, the popularity of gardening has been increasing significantly. Generally, several factors can hold a person back, lack of knowledge, lack of time, or lack of space.
I had all three!
My dream was when I had my own house, I would plant a garden like we had living at home in the Midwest. I admit it was a sort of rebellion for me, for my Mom would kill plants, so I sought to have them. I bought my first home in Mesa in the month of December, so when we would typically plant in April, I set out to turn some dirt for the seeds I bought at Home Depot. I remember the ground was hard and clay-like. It took a lot of work to break the crust up, the seeds were planted and I added fertilizer. Scraggly plants sprung up but became crispy fried. Whether it was lack of water, or from being drowned, or the heat, they never had a chance. All that effort and they all died! The experience psyched me out, and I gave up the thought of trying again.
One day I was doing a personal exercise of thinking of what dreams were yet to be fulfilled, and I remembered the want to have my own garden. I think the desire was made strong during the years I was in an apartment and knew I couldn’t have one that it ingrained in me. When you want something and can’t have it, you want it more, right? I thought, ok, I need to learn a new way to garden, others do it, I can learn from others and I can do it too. I say to try to convince myself. Never would I have imagined, I would learn a very new way!
As God would have it, just as I started to look to learn a better way, a friend on facebook shared a video of a vertical aeroponic gardening system that just came out on the market. I was excited thinking this is the solution that I didn’t even imagine possible! It took over 10 years to perfect. The inventor had a NASA grant to figure out an efficient way to grow the healthiest food possible for astronauts, and now we are blessed that we can buy it as well! They compared their harvest to plants grown by the best growers in the ground, and their plants grew faster, bigger, and longer/provided more harvests, and had significantly more minerals being grown aeroponically when compared to those grown in the ground.
I have been using these dirtless, no weeding gardens for 8 years now, both indoors and out. I don’t need to worry over or under watering, it has its own system. Not only does it help a person have a green thumb (or master gardeners to grow more faster), it is also “green” (eco-friendly) in that it uses 90% less water. Most of our yard is very shaded, but this small footprint was easy to place in a sunny spot. My favorite thing to grow is strawberries. In the past bugs and birds would eat them while I waited for them to ripen. In this vertical system, no worries of that! On the rare occasion when we have had a frost, I just roll the gardens under the patio for protection. I couldn’t do that for my plants growing in the dirt!
People who garden eat more fresh vegetables (especially kids!) and are getting much more nutrition than from what one buys in the store. It also saves on the need to go to the store as often too! Ron Finely said in his TED Talk, “Growing Your Own Food is like Printing Your Own Money.” If you would like to see a time lapse video of how quickly they grow, you can request here. (please share your name!)
Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18