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Bringing Back Backyard Planting in Every Household Backyard planting or simply gardening may be a hobby to some but may also be forgotten by many. In earlier times, most houses have backyard that can grow vegetables of different kinds where it is accessible to the recipes mother might need for cooking at any time of the day. Because of the changing times, houses with backyard are lesser and rise of condominiums are fast growing. Many neglect planting at this time of high technology age. Even our country’s agriculture industry of farming has slowed down due to conversion of large tracts of land to residential subdivisions. People may not realize that our garden not only makes our home beautiful but may provide us fresh vegetables making us fit and healthy. Also, planting is a good hobby because it makes you sweat. That makes it a good exercise too. There is no age limit in doing so, whether old people or even young kids can enjoy planting as long as there is devotion and proper care for their plants. As our community evolves, people can still adapt a healthy living. Plants in our home give us cleaner air, with the oxygen we need, especially in the polluted Metropolis. We can contribute together in our own little ways against the effect of global warming. Living in small houses like condominiums nowadays, in the absence of a backyard, still is possible to do gardening in pots and containers whether indoor or outdoor. In my research, I am amazed to know that almost any vegetables can adapt to growing in pots. You just need your imagination as to the size of the container and the plants that you will grow whether is it a flowering plant or simply vegetable. Just make sure they have enough space for them to grow, good soil and the love with much care. You may be fascinated to know that there are many ideas in growing vegetables in pot. In a tropical country like ours, we should be careful in choosing a spot where to grow our vegetables. We need the right amount of sunlight to get the optimum

growth of our plant. In places like condominiums, where space is quite limited, we can opt for indoor plants such as bamboo palm and peace lily. Some are often placed in bathrooms and laundry area. Surprisingly, I read from articles that they actually purify the air inside our homes naturally and even get rid of harmful VOC’s (Volatile Organic Compounds). If you have a veranda that has a good location to get the right amount of sunlight, you may now show some creativity and transform to a fresh, vibrant look with the right outdoor plant creating an accent to a simple balcony. For bigger patio, you may do the setting of vegetable garden container. Some vegetables that cultivate well in containers are carrots, potatoes, raddish, chillies and pepper, tomatoes, salad onions, etc. As for beginners, you may choose a large container that is enough to hold more soil and with some drainage holes to drain excess water. It is suggested to aim for containers with depth of around 18 inches to maintain moisture of plant roots. Aftercare involves constant water supply but avoid more than what is required. To those with bigger homes, it is easier to create a backyard vegetable garden using either in-ground vegetable bed or raised vegetable bed. I recalled at the age of 5, I started to do little planting. We had a household helper that would collect seeds of monggo & calamansi and put in each kind in a separate container with some soil. I am curious at a young age, how a seed would grow into a plant. We put the small containers in our small balcony and every day I would checked if there’s any stem or leaf coming out. The first time I saw the small stem & leaf I was very happy. I watered the plants once or twice a week. We also have a flowering plant placed outdoor in the balcony and two fortune plants indoor. This I think has influenced me with this advocacy to give value to planting. My advocacy to bring back backyard planting in every household means creating awareness to each and every individual the importance of gardening. By going back to basic, not

forgetting what our ancestors used to do before with backyard planting shall mean us to having a cleaner, healthier and greener environment. The awareness can simply start in our own home, with our relatives and friends. We need to educate people that gardening is a simple task. It can help the family earn additional income through business and also cut household expenditures. Another thing is that the atmosphere will then encourage children to eat vegetables, appreciate its importance, and create the awareness that may continue from one generation to another. Even at this computer age or to the future scenario, it will instill into each and everyone the significance of simple gardening that starts at our home. We will be able to preserve Mother earth by going natural in terms of the food we eat, the air we breathe and thus, lessen the effects of global warming. So come on, let’s go and Happy planting! – Jadienne Iris L. Go

Entry #2 - Bringing Back Backyard Planting in Every Household  

by Iris Go Chiang Kai Shek College

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