I don't remember exactly what lead me to this idea, but the
conversation was centered around the impending and inevitable
breackdown in society. The thought occurred to me, "What will happen
when the trucks stop coming?"
Those trucks, of course, are the big rigs that constantly replenish
our local store shelves with the sustanence we require. "Oh crap," I
thought to myself, "we're totally screwed!" Thus was sparked my
interest in sustainable agriculture. This was only a few months ago,
sometime around early February, and, at that time, I knew little to
nothing about gardening or agriculture on a large scale. I started
out reading anything I could find on the Web about gardening. After
eventually stumbling upon some literature on permaculture, I decided
to focus on gardening techniques that would take only the inputs that
I had readily available. After all, the trucks aren't running, right?
So all of this is getting ahead of my first foray into the world of
gardening. I started out just ripping up some grass, putting some
seeds under the dirt, adding some water and waiting. This, I decided
later, wasn't probably the best way to start a garden, but it was an
exeriment after all. I had terrible problems with powdery mildew and
most of my plants failed to produce much, with the exception of
tomatoes, which produced abundantly.
I eventually stumbled upon these Usenet groups. I learned more than I
could have ever imagined about composting and was able to turn my
dried out ant hill of a compost pile into an organic matter decaying
machine. I also learned of the terrible plight of our honey bee
friends and much about the numerous native bees and how to make a more
favorable habitat for them.
Perhaps the most important thing that I learned from these groups is
that all my plants needs can be provided for by the flora and fauna
living in the soil, so long as I treat them properly and try to make
my garden into a place where these tiny creatures can thrive.
Out of time now, so I will finish this later.