I sometimes imagine looking at humanity from a bird’s eyes. In my garden I see them all day flying around, playing, singing and eating, eating, eating—all day as much as they could want—eating.
I imagine being one of them flying over town. I imagine flying over supermarkets, seeing hundreds of people bustling in and out with bags full of shiny packages and fruits and vegetables wrapped tight in plastic, and wondering what kind of strange forest exists within those supermarket walls.
Or, flying by vagrants on the street begging for a dollar to buy something to eat, wondering if there’s some kind of special food these people need that doesn’t grow on earth.
Or following someone on their day, working hard at a job to earn enough to buy food for their family, then coming home in the evening to their house, surrounded by a yard with plants growing, and going straight to the fridge to look for food (at which point I would swiftly fly to the nearest tree and gorge myself silly on delicious sweet fruit and sing my favorite number with all my birdie bredrins).
I imagine seeing all this and thinking… “tweet tweet tweet”, which roughly translates to: “Well maybe it’s just my tiny unintelligent birdie brain, but for the life of me I just don’t understand those human beings… don’t they know that food grows?”
Yes, it’s true, food grows!
Okay, it’s not really a revelation (might be to some), but it’s crazy how little we recognise this and what it means for us. Nowadays, with so many toxins and harmful things in agricultural produce and store-bought food, with so much of it being old and un-fresh by the time we buy it, with the food prices rising and with the growing awareness of how much pollution and environmental damage it actually takes to have food in a supermarket for mass consumption, it’s becoming clear that we need a new approach to getting food. Or should I say, an old approach… ?
So many homes have yards with just grass and ornamental plants; why not plant some food in there? It looks beautiful, it’s healthy, it tastes much better than store-bought and it’s a potentially endless supply. Not only that, but you may even develop a deep connection of gratitude and humility for being part of such a beautiful and magical process. You may even find yourself singing like a bird.
It’s so simple! You don’t need to have a farm, all you need is a little love and dedication, and with the right conditions and know-how you can get anything to grow. Especially in the tropics, so much of what we eat grows abundantly with minimal maintenance. Garden-fresh tomatoes anyone?
So to close things off, I will offer you these simple words of advice: “Tweet! tweet!”, which roughly translates to: “Food grows! Plant some!”
Below is a before and after pic of a small strip of yard in my house that i decided to grow food on, and a list of all that is growing there. Basically all i did was cover the grass with cardboard to kill the weeds, put down some soil, cover it with some dead dry leaves and other organic matter – and plant! Took a little while to get going but it was honestly really simple.
Some are yet to bear, some are already abundant…
- Sugar Apple
- Aibika (edible leaf)
- Katuk (edible leaf)
- Poi Bhagi
- Lemon Basil
- and some beautifully fragrant and abundant flowers.