So as part of the staying at home part of being a stay at home economist, I decided to start a vegetable garden. Gardening has been a part of my life since I was little girl — my grandfather had a 1/2 acre garden in the back of his house, and the summers that I stayed with them were filled with nights of shelling peas. I always thought I would garden, but living in Texas made it hard, as I’m not an especially early riser, and it’s usually 90 degrees by 10 a.m. in the summer, or worse.
So when I moved to Seattle, I decided to get serious about it. With the addition of Professor X to the family, I also wanted him to taste food as I remember it, delicious, juicy, and flavorful — not mealy and vaguely bland as most mass produced vegetables. So I planted a smattering of items that were deemed suitable for the climate. Since we had a cold summer, the lettuce did the best, while the tomatoes are just starting to ripen, and the peppers are nowhere to be found. And the yields would make a Monsanto CEO laugh. But at least the little one will be able to have a taste of the bounty when he starts to eat solid food, thanks to a chest freezer and the miracle of electricity.
So far the investment far outstrips the return, but that is only if you don’t include the utility I gained from eating a tomato that tasted like a tomato instead of juice laden cardboard. With that addition, it was well worth it.