Who’s your Farmer?

Gardening with Jannie Vaught

Who’s your farmer? I for one know where my produce comes from. My very own garden. At one time I knew who grew my food, raised my beef and milked the cow I raised my children on. Now we are very far away from this simple lifestyle and all the goodness it brought with it. We are fed from monster farms who mass produce one crop, no diversity, and raise our food in un-natural feed lot’s. And now we are in the deepest drought we can ever imagine with these farms laying fallow. Maybe it’s time to get down to the basics of feeding ourselves again. There is a large movement across this country, it is referred to in several ways. Garden to the plate, Gate to the plate ( ranching and dairy), Orchard to plate fruit, nut’s, berries. Pasture raised and free range, the list can go on for a long time. The drive behind this movement is our realizing we are not being an active participant in this crucial part of our healthy life. At one time the small farmer and rancher was the real breadbasket of America. Big corporations ground them down to nothing, paying penny’s on the dollar for their places and turned them into corporate disasters. Hard words? Yes! We are in a serious situation with this continuing drought. Calif is gone, this state produced 85% of the nation’s food. The cost for a bag of groceries is nothing I ever would have believed just a few years ago. Now we are faced with not just high prices but the possibility of not enough food for everyone, not to mention the people who are already struggling with feeding their family’s. I came across an old advertisement from the day’s after WWII, when the Victory garden and small farm was promoted by the Government. The people saw the need, they were hungry and everyone literally, dug in. Are we so far removed that we can’t see the writing on the wall, or the empty cabinet, to realize it is time for us to again dig in. Returning to this simple life of again growing even as a supplemental to our food needs. Buying from local growers, ranchers, and orchards the local fruits of the field. After all the Earth belongs to us all. We are not part of some foreign place this is our home and we should care and be in gratitude for the rich soil and our river right in our own front yard. There is a story I would like to share with you. The story of the hummingbird. “There was a serious fire in the lush forest jungle. All the animals ran in fear and cowered in one place. “What shall we do? We will surely perish.” But there was one hummingbird who believed there was something she could do, so she flew to the creek and took as much water as she could carry in her tiny beak. She flew back to the fire and released her drop of water on the fire, again and again, she flew. The other animals saw her working and they too realized they could carry water and put it on the fire also. So they all worked running back and forth one drop at a time and put the fire out!
The care of one small drop of water can change the outcome of our current situation. One small garden can feed you, another can feed your neighbor and many, well that’s when we get sustainable again. Always know you are cared for and not alone, sometimes we have to pick up our shovel’s and Dig IN!  Just growing green!!!  Jannie

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