Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Be Green by Gardening

Did anybody see Michael Pollen's article in the New York Times: "Why Bother"? In it, he addresses the hopelessness that can occur when we think about making individual changes to benefit the environment. His answer? Gardening! Pollen argues that by growing our own food, we can, not only reduce our carbon footprint, but also reconnect to the earth. Here is an excerpt:

"But there are sweeter reasons to plant that garden, to bother. At least in this one corner of your yard and life, you will have begun to heal the split between what you think and what you do, to commingle your identities as consumer and producer and citizen. Chances are, your garden will re-engage you with your neighbors, for you will have produce to give away and the need to borrow their tools. You will have reduced the power of the cheap-energy mind by personally overcoming its most debilitating weakness: its helplessness and the fact that it can’t do much of anything that doesn’t involve division or subtraction...The single greatest lesson the garden teaches is that our relationship to the planet need not be zero-sum, and that as long as the sun still shines and people still can plan and plant, think and do, we can, if we bother to try, find ways to provide for ourselves without diminishing the world."

In what ways do you feel gardening connects you to environmentalism?

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