Tuesday, August 30, 2011
Change Is In The Air-and Other Places~
We are not in our previous zone anymore...climate change--regardless as to the why and how, is a fact that has established itself in the gardening arena all around the world. From milder winters, to longer and hotter summers, more unpredicted weather patterns and a renegade growth pattern that will keep the gardener up at night...all of these have been a steady show for the last few years.
One major change we are seeing is the early maturation of all fruits, vegetables and even herbs, highly productive but a shorter production time.
Sage Hill has kept a careful record of planting times, time span between planting and beginning of production, length of time between start and final production...it has gradually over a period of three years moved us a full zone from our previous one.
I am strongly seeing the need for more and more alternative ways of growing the foods we love and depend on for good health and survival.
High Tunnels and Green House growing I think will become a much needed and sought after alternative.
We must get serious about alternative methods of watering our gardens...both large and small. Rain barrels for the collection of rain water is a great choice for smaller needs. Larger farms will need to consider drilling wells to take water from deeper in the earth and natural springs over using water from the domestic sources that most use now. ( this is a good option regardless...especially if one is growing without chemicals....using water from the same source as your household needs is releasing a steady dose of chemicals on your gardens each time you water. ( don't overlook the use of a filtration system on the household water supply. )
In a 2009 report titled " Global Climate Change Impacts in the United States, the U.S. Global Change Research Program documents changes that have already occurred and provides predictions for the future. Average temps in the United States have risen more than 2*F in the past 50 years, for example, and are expected to increase an additional 4* to 11* F by 2100.
These changes will effect different parts of the country in different ways.
Hotter and drier conditions could decrease productive in the Southeast.
Severe storms along with longer droughts could increase the possibility of crop destruction in the Great plains.
But some changes will be an overall, country wide issue--extreme weather happenings. accelerated weed growth, higher and stronger pollen counts.
We are truly living in a time of great change.....the gardens are a much bigger part of that change than many might consider.
I have a sticker on the back window of my Jeep that reads 'No Farms-No Food.' My prayers are for the ability to adapt to the change in ways that will bring a new and hopefully better era of farming.
Your thoughts are always welcome.
My information in part comes from the Organic Gardening magazine.
A source of must know information ~
Enjoy September...a time of change in most welcomed ways at Sage Hill:)