During World Wars I and II, citizens experienced unprecedented challenges as they watched the world stage become a battle field before their eyes. Not only were millions of lives lost, but resources became scarce as our nation struggled to adjust to the demands of war. Despite all of this, great men and women stepped up to the challenges in unique and resilient ways and families responded to the call to help where they could.
One such way were Victory Gardens. Cabbages and lettuce were planted between roses, lawns doubled as potato beds, and fences became trellises for beans or
tomatoes. Having begun to grow their own food to relieve the stress of feeding a nation and troops abroad, so many took this very small thing seriously and grew all that they could. What they accomplished in their tiny spaces was greater than each person realized. Neighbors helped one another. Cooperatives were created. Unused land was given purpose. And, according to City Bountiful: A Century of Community Gardening in America by Laura Lawson, “together they produced 41% of the all the vegetable produce that was consumed in the nation.”
Victory Gardens represent the rich character and beliefs held by this great generation. To help your brother because you could. To do it wholeheartedly because it is morally right. To selflessly sacrifice time and effort in service to something greater.
I look at Victory Gardens as a worthy effort to partake in, even today. Do you have trees filled with food you can share? Can you grow for the joy of helping others? Do you want to instill the traits of working to grow something great in your children? Join New Mettle Farms this summer to learn how you can recreate a tradition that is worth following in. Together, we’ll grow it again!