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Is planting a garden climate activism?

Posted by James Bennett on

Growing herbs in the windowsill doesn’t feel like climate activism. It’s not vigorous, bannered, campaigning, but it does bring about change, which is what activism strives for.

Let’s compost it. 

Seeds, it’s all in the seeds. The little miracles that sprout in the soil and bloom in the air. As each plant grows, it sequesters carbon dioxide from the air and uses it, along with nutrients in the soil, to grow. So carbon dioxide created by burning fossil fuels is being removed from the atmosphere. That means we’re having a positive climate impact right? 

 
Image of the process: Nature.com

Okay so it turns out a herb garden doesn’t really make a dent in our yearly carbon footprints but it does sequester a little bit so we are on the right track. We just haven’t brought about enough change yet to be activists. 

 

So let’s look beyond the windowsill and see what else is happening when we plant a garden.

Sure, our home gardens don’t take as much carbon dioxide out of the air as a 3-year-old eucalyptus tree, but they do a lot of equally useful things that help climate change even more.

  • Plants consume the hot, stuffy air in our homes and create bursts of clean freshness for us. Did someone say global warming in practice? 
  • It teaches us how to care for natural balances. How much water and fauna do we need for soil fertility? What is the power of solar energy? How fast growth can happen in a healthy ecosystem? Natural resource management courses couldn’t be more simplified.
  • By growing your own food we learn what it takes to produce tomatoes so it makes us value the local farmers’ work. Did we just become conscious consumers focussed on local economics rather than globalisation? Very likely.
  • Reminds us what all natural flavour, colour and shape actually are. Once we know a life without insecticides, pesticides, or fungicides we can’t go back, can we? Supporting sustainable farming practices is only a hop, skip and a jump away once we take that first bite.

So how does planting a garden help climate change? 

If we are thinking about the choices we make and how they can help the climate then we have begun the journey of positive change. From here we can move forward with action.

It’s a journey we’d like to invite you on, to become a grower. Because we know through practice that once the first sprout curls its way into the air and shows promise of blossoming into food or flowers you’ll be hooked. 

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