Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Victory for Veggie Growing

Today, an advocate for the Victory Garden, Pamela Price, sent a one word tweat. "Joy" was all it said. It was her reaction to the news that the Obama's are tearing up part of the White House lawn for a Veggie Garden.

There is something you can do. You can plant an extra row.

That’s right. That’s the propaganda slogan from WW2 which sent people into their yards to grow their own food in order to take pressure off the world food supply and to feed troops overseas.

In this time of worry and fret and AIG, there’s a way to take a stab at several looming issues while having fun.

The Victory Garden is back. And this time, rather than being proclaimed important by the government as it was for the first time in pre-WWI 1910, the concept is sprouting and growing thanks to the vision of a group of California artists.

A couple years back, Amy Franceschini, a San Francisco visual artist and founder of Future Farmers, created start up kits and modern versions of the WWII propaganda posters. The idea caught on. Organic Gardening magazine published by the Rodale Institute near Reading, PA., profiled the movement in their April edition. Multiple websites are devoted to the topic.

Separately, the National Gardening Association found that interest in vegetable gardening is up 19% since 2008. Folks are reading enough books about food security to make Michael Pollan and Barbara Kingsolver household names. President Obama announced today that part of the White House lawn will be torn up for a vegetable garden to promote healthy eating.

People aren’t getting out in their gardens more because a book was written or a movement re-ignited, but because multiple historic and economic conditions have increased our interest in our food and have led us to buy books about food security. The conditions are fertile soil for the growth of the Victory Garden.

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