Plant Diversity (Guest Post by Rachel The Good)
You might not consider plant diversity when you plan a meal… but maybe you should. Rachel explains in today’s post. -DTG
The other day, while taking the kids out on an errand, we passed a billboard that read something to the effect of “Can you name 10 vegetables in 2 minutes? A little while later we came across another asking, “Can you name 20 fruits in 2 miles?” My first thought was, Sure I can! Why, what we’ve got growing in the yard right now could fill both lists…or almost anyway. But then I thought I’d have a little fun. Could the kids name the fruits and vegetables in the allotted time? I asked and they gave it their best shot. I’m really not surprised that they succeeded.
Actually, depending on which kids you query, they can even correctly identify the fruit and vegetable plants. They may not know the latest Disney movie character, but they know sure do know their edibles. And in my mind, that’s more important anyway.
But this little pop quiz got me thinking.
Is it really even all that hard for people to name 10 different vegetables and 20 different fruits—I mean, for people not…as crazy and extreme as we are?
I know the point of these advertisements is to get people interested in different types of produce, but I can’t help thinking that it’s all one big sham.
David often reminds me of something we heard in the documentary Food Inc.: We don’t really have choices when we shop at the supermarket — we have the illusion of choices. How many types of apples do you see at the local grocery store? Maybe a half dozen or so. Now go Google “apple varieties.”
It’s ok, I’ll wait.
(Me whistling while I wait for you to look it up. Me whistling a little more as you marvel at the lists, colors, descriptions of taste, growing conditions and habits. Me, stuck here, whistling away because, clearly, you’ve been sucked into this beautiful world of apples, from which you won’t return until you’ve picked out a few saplings and had them shipped to your door).
And that’s just apples, friends! How about the other 19 fruits you named in 2 miles? There is such diversity out there! I know you regular Florida Survival Gardening readers are more broad-minded than most, but still I think we’ve only really begun to scratch the surface when it comes to species diversity.
So, keep on experimenting. Plant seeds! Even Especially if your neighbor tells you the plant that emerges won’t be any good. Seek out the unusual varieties!
Nothing is gained if we all sit back and continue growing the same varieties found in the grocery store. And let’s keep on sharing what we’ve learned.
What different variety grows best where you live? Maybe it will work for me too. Yes, we’re survival gardening here, but let’s have a little fun with it.
It’s so exciting to see and taste the diversity in God’s creation. It’s part of what makes life delightful. And when we’re talking about preparing for TEOTWAWKI, I have this feeling we’re going to really enjoy the little things that make life a little more delicious.