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Opinion : Food shortages in the shops? Why not grow your own?

| March 14, 2020

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Have you thought about growing your own food rather than rushing out to stockpile food from the supermarkets?

I’m sure you have seen the pictures in the national media of empty shelves in supermarkets as a result of the Coronavirus crisis that is griping the world.

My good self has been thinking. It seems the Coronavirus may possibly cause disruption in the shops potentially for weeks or months into the future. Rather than stockpiling food would it not be better if as many people as possible grew their own?

Rather than going to town to stockpiling toilet rolls perhaps purchasing some vegetable seeds would be a wiser move? After all anyone with a garden can grow their own supply of fresh produce at home.

In my opinion the danger of disruption to the food supply, including through panic buying, is nearly as dangerous as theCovid-19 virus itself.

Personally I think those lucky enough to have a back garden could have a big advantage when it comes to food supply over the next few weeks and months.

Regular readers will know that my good self is a dab hand when it comes to gardening, indeed with the extensive grounds of my ancestral home there is plenty of room to grow my own food.

In fact most of the older houses in High Wycombe have gardens, sadly many have been paved over in recent years as home owners have become too lazy to mow the lawns let alone dig the garden to grow their own food.

Greenhouses were once common place in back gardens but these days they are a rare sight. However you don’t need a green house to get plants growing.

Instead of wasting time playing a game of hide and seek with rolls of 2-ply tissue in the local supermarkets my good self has invested in packets of vegetable seeds. Once the meagre supply of food in my kitchen cupboards has run out hopefully the supply of fresh produce from my large kitchen garden will kick in.

Do you know it’s ever so easy to grow lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, potatoes, runner beans, peas and the like? In times of hardship in the past many home-owners in Wycombe and across the country resorted to growing their own. Most houses had apple and other kinds of fruit trees in their back gardens.

I pity all those who bought the modern houses that don’t have gardens, in the coming weeks they will be totally are reliant on shops with no hope of growing their own food.

Of course it’s now March and the start of spring and the new growing season if upon us so it’s the perfect time to set a few vegetable seeds. Once harvested many items like potatoes, apples, pears, onions, etc…. can easily be stored for consumption later.

Luckily, in the grounds of my ancestral home, there happens to be a large purpose designed food store that was built during World War II to hold produce grown on the estate. Indeed during the war the food store held enough fruit and vegetables to feed several families all year round with plenty left over. During the past few days yours truly has been busy getting the food store ready for action again.

If you don’t happen have a purpose built food store in your garden then a cool back bedroom is an ideal alternative.

In my opinion buying toilet rolls and dried food is only a short term solution and the powers that be should be encouraging people with gardens to become self sufficient in terms of food supply.

The battle against the Coronavirus has many fronts, perhaps as many people as possible should ‘Dig for Victory‘ rather than ‘Queuing for Toilet Paper‘?

What do you think?

My blogs are published regularly here on the WycombeToday.com website.

You can also follow me on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/ivor.wycombe or on Twitter at https://twitter.com/Ivor_Wycombe.

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