I love having a garden. There’s nothing like walking out your door and picking fresh vegetables to help create a delicious meal. I also like the relaxing zen like quality of tending to my garden. It gives me a chance to unplug from my day and clear my head while I weed and water. There are many benefits to having a garden. The obvious is the fresh food and comfort that you’re putting healthy food into your body. But things are really beginning to change. Urban farms are gaining traction allowing individuals or groups to establish mini-farms on small plots that help make efficient use of the land. There are all kinds of creative ways to grow food, from installing roof top gardens, using vacant lots or abandoned buildings, and vertical gardening. Urban farms are popping up across the country and they are enabling people that previously weren’t able to have a garden to participate with their community in learning to grow and share fresh healthy food. Pretty cool.
Have you thought about starting your own garden or participating in an urban farm? Check out the benefits:
It’s Local-By growing what we need near where we live, we reduce the food miles and save on food transportation costs. We also get fresh produce and get our foods “in season.”
It adds beauty to our cities-The greenery produced from urban farms and gardens contributes to the beautification of our cities. Urban farms increase shade and they actually cool off the unpleasant heat effects created by urban environments. They provide areas for relaxation and attract tourists.
Urban farms spur economic growth-Since urban farms are localized, it keeps dollars circulating throughout the community. This helps stabilize food costs, it can create jobs, and is a great return on the investment for the community, producing up to $6 for every $1 invested.
Urban farms improve health-Studies have shown that urban farms improve health not only by providing nutrient rich foods, but by increasing exercise and improving mental health. Gardening induces exercise which lowers obesity rates, reduces heart disease, and lowers the risk of diabetes. Growing your own food reduces stress and improves mood through creating sustainable social projects.
Meet your neighbors and make new friends-The social aspect of urban farming is undeniable. It strengthens communities by building an identity and spirit. It reduces crime by introducing neighbors and providing more eyes on the street. It also connects different cultures which adds to the character of farming and the community.
If you’ve ever thought about sprouting your green thumb, now is your chance! Find out where you can contribute to your local urban farm, check out this great website for all of your urban farming resources: http://www.urbanfarm.org/
As always I’m available to answer questions about healthy lifestyles. If you’re looking at ways to improve your health and live a sustainable lifestyle why not “click here” for a complimentary health strategy session. I’ll get you headed in the right direction.
Happy Independence Day!