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April 4, 2011

Even the Mayo clinic supports home gardening

By Jennifer Nelson and Katherine Zeratsky
Mayo Clinic, March 23, 2011

Gentle breezes. Sunlight. Bird songs. I can actually see the ground peaking out under the snow. And did I mention -- the return of daylight saving time? Spring is almost here.

All winter I've been thinking about gardening. I want to grow edible things, and I'm not the only one. A survey of over 100 million U.S. households revealed that spending for vegetables and fruits now surpasses spending for lawns, trees, shrubs -- and even flowers. The same survey unearthed the following trends among gardeners:

53 percent grow vegetables in their gardens
90 percent plan to eat the produce fresh
66 percent will share with friends
36 percent will can or preserve produce
24 percent will donate food to others
Another survey, this one by the National Gardening Association, looked at the main reasons people grow gardens:

58 percent desire better tasting food
54 percent want to save money on food bills
51 percent want better quality food
48 percent want to grow food they know is safe
I'm ready to get my hands dirty. I'm going to plant a garden because I want to better understand the labor that goes into producing food, and be more thankful for how plants nourish my body and soul.

I'll start small -- some herbs in pots (cilantro, basil, dill and rosemary), leaf lettuce and spinach, a few spring onions, and some beets. I fondly remember my father's garden -- he grew the best tomatoes. Maybe I'll plant a couple of those too. What about you? What will you be growing and why?

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Posted by Marilyn Renaker at April 4, 2011 2:12 PM
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