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Diabetics need LOTS of fresh vegetables, and some fresh fruits. Even in season, these cost a lot for people on small food budgets. So, whether to save money OR to know exactly how and where your food is grown (carefully and without pesticides), then you need a garden.
In fact, everyone needs to garden. No excuses! If you are in an apartment without a balcony, there are now many solutions. If you have a balcony, there are great new choices! If you have a patch of ground, there are several ways to increase it’s yield. And, if you are lucky enough to have your own yard (or a plot in a community garden), then you can behold the bounty of Nature big-time.
This is a busy fortnight for me, so I’ll be making this a series and will add more posts over the next few weeks. But, the gardening season has started, so you need to, also!
All of us have a major problem unless we follow through on this project. In this era of food illiteracy, financial insecurity, possible societal insecurity, when climate change is impacting food prices too, it behooves you to act for your own Health and survival by planting a garden.
Now is the time. The season has begun in most of the Northern Hemisphere, and if you are in the far North (or in autumn / winter in the Southern Hemisphere), there are still projects you can be doing to bring fresh, nearly free, clean, wholesome food into your diet.
Everyone needs fresh, raw food (and veggies lightly steamed or gently roasted, when cooked). Fruits need to be whole and kept at minimal levels for diabetics. The emphasis is getting at least 6 vegetable portions a day of lower glycemic index vegetables and 2 fruit (including one citrus or Vitamin C source – like kiwi) – no juice.
Each meal, fill 2/3 of your plate with a variety of vegetables and you are well on the way to Health, with a teaspoon of olive oil and a piece of protein the size and thickness of the palm of your hand.
So, let’s tackle the steps to making a garden in this series. This is not rocket science. It’s not hard; Nature knows HOW. All you have to do is to start and support the natural process.
If you only have window/s in your apartment:
___ you can still grown an amazing amount and variety of fresh food in any window, even in highly concentrated places like New York City
___ learn a lot more at http://windowfarms.org
___ learn what one window farm can grow!
___ Plants that have been grown by this method include —
Fruiting Plants: okra, cherry tomatoes, scallop squash, small cucumbers, beans, strawberries, peppers, peas, Japanese eggplant.
Leafy Greens: arugula, bok choy, broccoli rabe, kale, chard, radicchio, watercress, chives, various microgreens, and many varieties of lettuce.
Herbs: rosemary, cilantro, basil, thyme, oregano, parsley, mint, and sage.
Edible Flowers: nasturtium, violets, and marigolds.
___ start gathering 1 liter soda pop bottles from friends, family, co-workers (who already have this nasty drinking habit). Don’t start drinking soda pop at all — any version. Just become a new source to recycle some bottles.
___ If you have multiple windows, then use the sunniest ones, but be aware in bedrooms, that at night, plants will use your oxygen and release carbon-dioxide, so don’t close your door and do have fresh air coming in. It’s better not to use bedrooms.
___ alternatively, you can also use grow-lights and or hydroponic solutions. Search for these terms and you will find lots of information.
___ all groups of residents can learn to grown sprouts, indoors. Make sure that you and anyone who touches your sprouts and sprout bottles wash their hands after bathroom and other dirty chores. Sprouts need to be eaten raw to get their best enzymes and nutrition, but they must be kept fastidiously clean to be able to eat them raw. Sprout-growing is a very easy, inexpensive, relatively-fast way to get healthy raw food in any season.
If you only have a small balcony or patio area:
___ in the sunniest part of the area, start a vertical wall of plants using a system like the one at Wooly Pocket
___ use a pottery urns called strawberry jars. Their pockets, as well as Square Foot Gardening principles, with taller plants in the least sun-blocking position, will help you grow a lot in a small space.
___ use a specifically-designed food-grade 5 gallon plastic pail to grow food. Do not use paint containers or any plastic other than designated food-grade. Restaurants may allow you to get their 5 gallon food grade containers for free or a small charge, instead of them recycling them. Learn more at: Video – 5 gallon garden
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