Do you garden or have a community garden? Today, people are becoming more health-conscious and are looking for ways to eat more healthy and fresh foods. Because of these trends, an old gardening program called Victory Gardens has become popular again.
History of Victory Gardens
In 1917, War Gardens, later called Victory Gardens, after the allies' victory at the war's end, were organized into a commission by a group of American politicians, intellectuals, conservationists, and social welfare activists in reaction to World War I's detrimental effect on the food supply chain. Trade relations with nations that had previously imported food from their current enemies faced severe shortages. In addition, what resources they did have were being funneled into soldiers’ rations.
By 1918, there were an estimated 5.2 million War Gardens in America. Many participated in daily gardening, drying, and canning lessons to further stretch the food supply. By the time the Second World War came around, people were primed and ready to pick up the gardening habit again. The most abundant crops were beans, beets, cabbage, carrots, kale, kohlrabi, lettuce, peas, tomatoes, turnips, squash, and Swiss chard. Many were chosen for their ease in storing or preserving.
Today’s Victory Gardens are based on our desire to provide food for our loved ones. Growing food helps us to become self-sufficient. It also lowers our grocery bills to use our money on other resources. The modern movement encourages people to look for ways to utilize their space and grow veggies in containers, vertical structures, or windowsills.
How Victory Gardens Help your Physical, Mental, and Financial Health
Nurturing a Victory Garden provides a morale boost, healthy outdoor time, and exercise. Growing your food also has an environmental impact because you’re using fewer chemicals and cutting down on those 'food miles,' eating food that doesn't have to travel across the country. It is gratifying to say, 'I grew that!'
Studies have shown that spending time in nature can have physical, mental, and emotional health benefits, including lower blood pressure, reduced stress, and improved mood.
Consider small potted vegetables for urban areas and apartments if an entire garden isn't possible. You can also find farmers' markets in your area with fresher and healthier products for you. Read more about the Omaha Farmers Market and the Omaha Village Pointe Farmers Market.
Think of your garden as your very own seasonal supermarket. You will be providing your family with the freshest and most nutritious food, picked at its peak. Way better than store-bought and fewer trips to the store!