I recently had the privilege of appearing on a radio show where we did nothing but talk about vegetable gardening for over an hour. It was a lot of fun, and the questions by the host, Kate Copsey, were fantastic. They made me do some quick thinking about my own vegetable gardening experiences, what I grow, methods I use and so on. More importantly the interview also made me think about trends in vegetable gardening that will be big in the upcoming year.
Maybe my own company will be one of those trends with the way we deliver seeds to our customers, only time will tell, but after I spoke with Kate on her radio program, we both agreed that there will be a couple of trends that will definitely increase, based solely on what we see going on right now.
The economy, I am sure has a lot to do with these trends, and because of the economy, maybe just maybe, it’s making everyone realize what is important in our day to day lives as we all scale back a bit, find ways to save money all the while getting healthy food on the dinner table.
Vegetable gardening in general will do that, but it also provides for an opportunity to do two things, that I believe will be the trends for the upcoming year. They are a chance to take part in community gardening and an increase in vegetable gardening for kids.
There is a variety of community gardening methods, such as taking a plot of land and having a group of people tend to it or taking a plot of land, subdividing that land and everyone grow what they would like on their own plot. I see this become more common here in New Jersey and as many of our Facebook members have wrote us, Detroit, MI and Los Angeles, CA seem to be growing in this area as well.
Community gardening can either provide food for the person or people tending the garden or as I have seen in my own town, harvesting the food and donating it to a local church or food shelter to help out those in need. Community gardening is growing, and although statistics of its growth weren’t available at the time I wrote this article, just based on what I see, it will not be slowing down anytime soon.
As a father of two children myself, and being fortunate to have a father to teach me gardening skills, I clearly understand the importance of passing on my gardening skills to the next generation, and I see that other parents and grandparents do as well. What makes this trend even more exciting to follow is the creativity adults are using to capture the attention of children and get them excited about growing their own vegetables. Whether it is reusing egg cartons as seed starters or a pizza box as a garden bed, there are a variety of ways to get children involved.
I find in my own experience that having my son use his own “play” tools to help dig or rake go a long way in teaching him to have fun all the while actually learning gardening. When it comes time to harvest the fruits and vegetables he gets excited to pick them himself, and who wouldn’t, because not too long after they are harvested, we prepare them for a meal. Garden to plate in less than 30 minutes!
If you know how to use a shovel, put a seed in your soil, and know how to use a watering can, then you already have the knowledge, skills and ability to ride the wave of these two trends.
About the Author
Michael C. Podlesny is the administrator for the largest Vegetable Gardening page on Facebook.