An excellent friend got me hooked on TED Talks over the weekend. Most go long enough to last the drive from the train station to the office or close at least. Today I listened to a brilliant one by Roger Doiron that I would love to share with you.

The statistics in this short talk alone are incredible – measuring the cost of our food by energy is simply mind blowing. It certainly inspires to grow just a little more from home.

It really doesn’t take much. It can be herbs, it can be lettuce, or tomatoes- anything you use regularly or can share with your friends and neighbours. Anything we can do can make the greatest difference, and beyond this a greater reward.

So many people tell me they can’t do it, they are terrible or its too involved and they cant remember everything they have to do. While I joke about it often, there isn’t such a thing as a brown thumb. As with any new skill it takes time and practice. I have hit so many road blocks so far, but the rewards I have had are immeasurable.

Over the weekend we cracked open our first home grown watermelon, the sweetest I’ve ever tasted. Fresh, hot chillies flavour pasta, stir fry and pizza. Fresh basil pesto, pasta salad with peppery rocket. Fresh comfrey to make fertiliser with. Sweet crunchy carrots and radishes. I have thrown away absolutely no spinach in the last six months, previously throwing away half bags that went unused, now I pick only what I need. I have had a beautiful display of zinnias all summer in my front yard to make me smile as I leave and return home each day. The calendula brings a bright burst to my back yard. I have successfully created a sanctuary for my family.

I have had every bug under the sun. I had scale, I have powdery mildew. Ants are everywhere. I have an endless supply of grass to pull out of the garden beds that is growing from the horse poo. My retic system failed miserably the first time I did it. I have killed dozens of plants.

Please do not lose faith! Read and practice and you will succeed, making a difference everyday to  our food shortage and creating fresh air and cooling our community.