Well, green thumb maybe. Today, I picked the first cucumber of the summer from my patio garden. My sad little plant has taken off, and I’ll soon be setting up a table in the front yard to give cucumbers away. I’m still waiting for my tomatoes and zucchini, but I did get a late start on my garden with our recent move.
I am 100% behind the drive to “eat local”. I make several trips each week to my local farm stands to buy fruits and vegetables during these plentiful summer months. Yes, it’s better for the environment because it doesn’t require trucking in vegetables from hundreds of miles away. So my cucumbers have a tiny carbon footprint…blah, blah, blah. My reasons for supporting local farmers are a lot simpler than that:
- I believe that we show our love for God and His Creation by being responsible stewards of that Creation. As Pope John Paul II wrote in his 1991 encyclical Centesimus Annus, the earth and its resources have a “…God-given purpose, which man can indeed develop but must not betray.”
- My heritage includes a family farm. My grandfather owned and operated a small dairy farm. My mother spent many childhood years milking the cows each day. Having heard the stories of the family farm, I understand the need to protect the livelihood of small, family run farms.
- Last but not least, locally grown produce just tastes better! The tomatoes don’t taste like plastic; the cucumbers aren’t coated with wax; and the peaches…Let’s just say, I refuse to buy grocery store peaches -ever- because there is no comparison.
So this suburban, conservative housewife does live green. I plant my modest vegetable garden each year; I buy my produce from local farmers as often as possible; and I might even try composting. Above all, I’ll be thanking God for His gift of the earth and all that it contains.