Social, and Economic Benefits of a Home Garden

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home garden

A home garden provides animal and plant consumption and items not available or affordable in the market.

It is a system of small-scale production whereby you can grow plants in your backyard or in an area with easy access.

Hence, it is either in the household or at walking distance from it.

Moreover, it follows a mixed cropping system.

There are fruits, spices, vegetables, herbs, medicinal plants, plantation crops, ornamental plants and livestock.

Hence, it provides food and income as a supplementary source rather than the main one.

This article discusses the several benefits of having a home garden and how you can make use of it.

Keep reading below to know more!

kitchen garden

Social Benefits of a Home Garden

The characteristics of a home garden include:

  • It is located in the house or near it
  • The production of food is not the main source of consumption or income rather supplemental
  • Poor can enter this production system easily by growing plants in their backyard
  • High diversity of plants
  • Uses a small area

Due to its characteristics, a garden inside the home or nearby can provide social benefits to the family and community.

Provides Nutritional and Food Security 

When food is growing right in your backyard in a kitchen garden, there is more accessibility, utilization and availability of food.

It plays a vital role in food security helping with obtaining fresh plant and animal food.

They add to the nutritional requirements of the family housing the garden.

It resulted in 18 percent of caloric and 14 percent protein consumption in houses in Indonesia in the 1930s.

A house’s food consumption also increases with the production.

The plants are not only for human consumption but also for animal fodder.

Hence, sustaining livestock along with human consumption.

The integration of livestock and poultry provides other items such as milk and eggs for protein intake.

There is a diversity of animal and plant food items hence increasing the dietary intake.

This boosts the absorption and bioavailability of nutrients.

Thus, it is one of the main sources of staple food for people who live in densely populated and degraded areas with fewer croplands.

Raises the Status of Women 

Women are usually managing the home gardens.

This goes down to the socio-cultural norms of the area.

Their contribution to household food production is a lot however, they are not always the only ones looking after it so it is not limited to being a female activity.

It raises the status of women by demonstrating their agronomic competency.

Moreover, it shows the commitment of a woman to her family’s wellbeing.

It helps to improve their social status as well as income and their awareness on food habits.

For some, it is their only source of livelihood.

Hence, it plays a prominent part in women-led households where they are the primary breadwinners.

Women are both home and environment managers.

They can meet the family’s consumption needs using their indispensable services.

Hence, they contribute to household eminence and subsistence. with important knowledge on gardening.

This gives them more autonomy when it comes to gardening for food consumption.

vegetables

Health Benefits and Preservation of Knowledge

Health Improvement 

The use of plants is not limited to food consumption.

Medicinal plants provide protection from diseases whereas some also work as biological pesticides to prevent pests.

Plants in home gardens also serve as medicinal herbs to treat minor health problems in a cost-effective way.

They come in use in treating various diseases and illnesses.

Moreover, when there is good food consumption and production, it reduces the risk of malnutrition and micronutrient deficiency.

This can further reduce problems such as pneumonia, diarrhea, measles among other infectious diseases.

Hence, there are fewer chances of impairment of motor skills in younger children.

Thus, it plays an integral part in improving the health conditions of people using it.

Preservation of Indigenous Knowledge 

Over the years, people lose out on culture and indigenous knowledge.

Home gardening is a way to preserve it.

The farming practices to plant the crops need rich communal knowledge.

You can preserve it by passing it on from one generation to another by teaching the next one about gardening too.

It can go beyond a household.

The knowledge and interactions build ties in the community and reinforce social status.

Building a social network, integration and capital through exchanging and gifting vegetables, fruits and other produce thrives the community.

Besides these, there are also environmental and economic benefits of planting a garden at home.

environmental benefits of home garden

Environmental Benefits of a Home Garden

The environmental benefits of gardening in the house are immense.

You are using an ecological-friendly approach to produce food.

Meanwhile, it conserves natural resources and biodiversity.

There is a rich diversity of animals and plants, some of them being rare.

Hence,  gardening helps to converse the genetic material of the rare plant species as well.

When it comes to animals, insects and birds, it becomes a habitat to these beneficial organisms.

What’s more, there is an efficient nutrient cycling system at play.

There is animal and plant litter leading to the recycling of organic soil matter.

This helps to also reduce soil erosion and conserve land.

Well, they can also attract honey bees that assist in fruit dispersal and pollination.

House gardens produce quality food, maintain landraces, pest control and cultural services.

Hence, they differ from large-scale, commercial food production.

The relationship of plants, animals and individuals of the garden are symbiotic.

Where plants and animals provide food whereas, individuals take care of the garden.

Plants are food for animals, and animal manure is an organic fertilizer for plants.

This benefits the environment as there is no use of chemical fertilizer.

Poultry and livestock manure will be enough to introduce phosphorus, nitrogen, potassium and organic soil matter.

Livestock activities help to accelerate nutrient cycling.

Plus, they also retain moisture in the ecosystem.

Thus, they work differently than commercial agricultural land.

In this symbiotic relationship at home, everyone benefits from one another.

Since the plants can also grow in access, their use is not limited to the consumption of the family.

Rather, they can be sold too.

kitchen garden need

Economic Benefits of a Home Garden

Food security and growing your own food helps to feed a family on a tight budget.

Though, the benefits are way beyond.

It can generate income, promote rural development, entrepreneurship and the general livelihood of people.

Improvement in Household Economic Well-being 

Extra produce can be sold or even an existing one can have an additional income outlet.

Save on buying food from the market.

The activities can turn into a small-scale cottage industry.

The savings from selling products and saving expenditure can come in use for other domestic needs.

They can come in handy in spending on education, savings and medical needs.

In fact, families can contribute 22 to 60 percent of their income from gardening alone.

That said, they are not enough to avert poverty because these gardens are essentially subsistence-low production systems.

They cater to family needs more.

In order to rise to a commercial enterprise, the focus should be on animal husbandry and growing high-value crops.

Though, there is no doubt, that the income can improve the living conditions of the family and their financial status.

Meanwhile also plays a part in cultural and social amelioration.

Moreover, producing all the plants in the home is more cost-effective.

Therefore, less input and investment for poor families but greater output.

home garden benefits

Other Benefits

Private house gardens are different from home gardens.

The former is for the purpose of beautifying your backyard while the latter helps to grow produce for consumption and sale.

However, in both, you have:

  • Easy Access to Grow Plants

You can grow food right in your backyard.

Hence, you save so much money and time on buying and getting vegetables, spices herbs and more from the market.

Plus, you may spend on seeds and fertilizer but that is all.

A single plant will result in a lot of produce, saving your expenses.

  • Conserving the Environment

Composting and use of animal manure reduce the environmental impact by acting as fertilizer.

As a result, ground contamination reduces.

Moreover, green plants prevent soil erosion.

  • Using it as a Hobby

Planting a home garden is not only for the poor.

Anyone can plant and use the products as a hobby.

This also helps to improve your health and reduce your expenditures on buying food items.

Plus, it is a relaxing and stress-free activity.

Watching your plants grow from seeds to fruits and vegetables is also immensely satisfying.

Plus, you can involve your family in caring for the plants.

It increases participation and also a social connection with the community.

  • Control Over What You Eat

Do you know how the vegetables you eat are grown? You probably don’t!

However, once you grow them on your own, there is full control on chemicals and pesticides.

This produce grown in your house is organic, without any chemicals.

Plus, freshly harvested produce is usually richer in nutrients than that bought from the store.

Hence, these benefits of a home garden can have a social, environmental impact and improve the condition of the family.

Thus, if you want to start having your own produce, begin planting some seeds today!

 

 

 

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