Earth Matters by Jacqueline Milner – Earth Day is Around the Corner! April 19, 2012

CFN – With Earth Day just around the corner I am reminded of how we are dependant on Earth for our survival.  Our health is dependant on her.  Everything that sustains us; air, water, food and shelter comes from Earth.  Are you doing anything special this Earth Day?  Has awareness inspired you to live differently in your “day to day” out of concern and respect for your fellow man and this spaceship we call Earth?  We would love to hear about it.  The sharing of your actions can be the inspiration for another to begin living from a place that is loving and respectful to the world.

One of my own pet peeves is the far reaching hand of plastic in the ‘day to day’ of most people.  Newspapers are delivered in plastic bags.  Bread, vegetables and fruit are packaged in plastic.  Next time you are in your local grocery store, take a good look around to see how much plastic is in each grocery cart.  It can be overwhelming when you consider that most of this plastic is not recycled, ends up in a landfill (if it doesn’t blow out of the ‘garbage can’ waiting for the weekly refuse pick-up or if it doesn’t blow off of the garbage truck on its way to the dump) and when, and if it eventually breaks down into small little particles, could very well contribute to the death of a life form that inadvertently consumes it as food.  For those of you who read the last Earth Matters column, hundreds of thousands lives are lost due to the consumption of plastic.

With the snow gone and the grasses and plants just beginning to blossom you can’t help but notice the incredible amount of plastic garbage everywhere.  I find this quite disturbing.  The image below was taken on a recent walk through a wooded area in Cornwall, Ontario.  Amongst the blossoming forest floor is a piece of plastic from a nearby business.

So what practical steps can we take?  Refuse to use!  I know it is easier said than done.  How about growing some of your own food?  Planting season is just around the corner.   Growing some of your own food will eliminate the plastic packaging if bought, provide optimum nutrition because the item would go from garden to table and would save the resources and eliminate the carbon production required to transport the product to your grocery store.  Here are a couple of items that are easy to grow.

How about some radishes?  Radishes are an easy to grow cool season vegetable.  Radishes love cool weather and could actually be started now.  This is a vegetable that can also be sown in late summer.  Radishes and their leaves are an excellent source of vitamin C which is a cancer-preventing antioxidant.  They are also great sources of folic acid and potassium and aid in digestion and liver health.  Packs quite the health punch for a small easy to grow vegetable.

Zucchini is one of my most favourite vegetables to grow.  They are very easy to grow; I usually start them from seed outdoors.  Like all squash varieties, they need plenty of room to grow.  Each plant will require a spacing of about 3 feet between plants.  This is a plant that requires warm weather.  It will grow very fast once it begins to blossom.  They also require lots of water and fertilizer throughout the growing season.  Zucchini is rich in Vitamin C and lutein both of which are food for the eyes.  The plant also produces beautiful large orange blossoms which can be eaten.  A great specimen for the beginner or experienced gardener.

If you live in a very confined space I urge you to visit the Cornwall Transition + Facebook    They have some interesting suggestions for growing food in limited space.

Do you have any suggestions?  Please share below or drop a line to

1 Comment

  1. Ah…..Earth Day….Yes. Our gardens are ready, freshly rototilled, waiting for those first seeds to be sown and those first plants to be planted. Just remember to plant once danger of frost has passed.

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