Victory Over Quarantine Gardening

By Anna Marie Imbordino

It goes without saying that quarantine and social distancing needs have affected the way we live, especially the way we eat and shop. At times we may be unsure whether we can access our favorite restaurants, stores and farmers markets. We may find that delivery services are inconsistent for our needs. Specialty foods may have become expensive and exotic produce harder to find. So what can our communities do to stay healthy during these uncertain times?

We may remember stories from our grandparents about food rationing, homesteading and planting Victory Gardens during World War I and II. Your family may even have a recipe or two indicative of the food needs of that time. If we lean on history as an example, it can provide helpful ideas about how your family can thrive through stressful years.

First promoted during World War I, victory gardens provided communities an opportunity to assist with the war effort. Families were encouraged to produce their own food, planting gardens in their backyards, churchyards, schools and community centers. These garden harvests would then be shared and traded with neighbors and extended family as a supplement to the rations purchased from stores. Traditional victory gardens included foods high in nutrition for families such as beans, cabbage, carrots, kale, lettuce, peas, tomatoes, turnips, squash, and cooking herbs.

The Victory Garden campaign served as a highly successful and celebrated means of boosting morale, expressing patriotism, and safeguarding against food shortages on the home front. Let’s take a play from Gramps and challenge our Carolina Bay neighbors to start their own “Victory over Quarantine” Gardens. Below are some helpful tips to start your home garden.

1. Take advantage of small spaces by utilizing raised garden beds, potted planters and hanging planters.

2. Work together with neighbors to grow different varieties of fruits, vegetables and herbs to share.

3. For newer gardeners, look towards easier to grow options like herbs and potted vegetable plants as well as older, established plants from a local nursery or hardware store.

4. Do your research on how to save and store your harvest for use throughout the year such as canning, freezing, and pickling.

5. Join online groups like Carolina Bay Swap and Lowcountry Plant Swap so you can notify neighbors of extra harvest for trade.

Anna Marie Imbordino is a resident of Carolina Bay. She is an award-winning writer, publicist and environmentalist. Connect with her on social media by following @teawiththebee

This article was featured in the April 2021 issue of Carolina Bay Neighbors magazine.


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