Together for tomorrow


The Garden Guide: Watch how your garden grows

by | Jan 9, 2024

Reason to care: Industrial agriculture is extractive and driven by profit maximisation instead of creating farming systems that care for the Earth. This way of farming and rearing livestock is responsible for vast planetary and social harms. Industrial agriculture often relies on toxic chemical fertilisers and pesticides, and farming methods, that deplete the soil and natural ecosystems, as well as causing health implications for farm workers. What’s more, most of us rely on corporate supermarkets to access our food, while becoming further removed from the food systems that supply us with our nutrients.

But, there is an alternative movement of farmers and growers who are reclaiming food systems and showing us how we can farm food in harmony with the land, while regenerating the soil, and sustaining natural ecosystems – and producing nourishing food.

It’s unrealistic for all of us to grow our own food, which is why supporting small, local producers is important. But, learning to grow your own food, or tend to your own garden is a wonderful way to reconnect with nature and often soothes the busy minds that so many of us are familiar with.

Small actions with big impacts:

  • Grow vegetables where you can. It’s satisfying and can reduce your carbon footprint and the need for plastic packaging.
  • Learn about planting calendars and what is best planted in different seasons. You can follow Abalimi Bezekhaya for seasonal planting calendars that will guide you on what you should be planting at different times of the year.
  • If you don’t have space to grow vegetables, try growing herbs. Herbs can be used in many different meals, and are often very easy to grow, which gives you the satisfaction of eating something you have grown. And, you can avoid buying herbs that often come in small quantities and excess packaging.
  • Practise water-wise gardening. Ask your local nursery for advice on which indigenous plants are best suited for your area, and which don’t require too much watering. Watering either in the early morning or evening is best as it avoids water loss due to evaporation from the sun and transpiration by plants. You can also invest in a water tank that allows you to harvest rainwater for your garden.
  • Create a pollinator-friendly garden. Pollinators play a vital role in our natural ecosystems and we can plant certain things that encourage pollinators to continue their work. Take a look at this Botanical Society guide on how to create a pollinator-friendly garden in South Africa.
  • Plant indigenous plants and support local nurseries. Planting indigenous plants is better for the environment and allows natural ecosystems to flourish. Click here to discover Happy By Nature’s top 6 organically-grown indigenous plants for your home. And check out this article for 7 South African nurseries selling indigenous plants.
  • Learn how to save seeds. Seed saving is an ancient practice that helps preserve local crops and promote more resilient yields. Read more about seed saving here. 

If you are looking for inspiration, look here:

Image: Unsplash / Zanda Photography

Share this article:

Related Posts

Our work is in line with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals 12, which aims to ensure sustainable consumption and production. Read More