Image result for canning jars


I have probably said something snide about “checklist” Mormonism a time or two.  But rules, checklists, and practicality have the same relationship to spirituality that flesh has to spirit.  The former provides form, content, and meaning to the latter.  The former is often the best route to the latter.  Eating is more important than studying nutritional principles.

I have read and written breathless little sermons on the spiritual value of gardening.  The glories of creation and all that.  I love them.

But the Mormon says, “Why should you garden?  For the cheap vegetables.” (NB: it takes a fair amount of mental independence these days to grow cheap vegetables. Much of the gardening advice out there will get you growing very expensive vegetables indeed.)

I just read a talk by President Kimball that represents the Mormon character in concentrated form.

It starts with a heartfelt recounting of the resurrection and a testimony of the Christ.  Step by step, it moves to a sentence or two of one of those little sermons on creation and ends up with yard care and growing food.

We are concerned when we see numerous front and side and back yards that have gone to weeds, where ditch banks are cluttered and trash and refuse accumulate. It grieves us when we see broken fences, falling barns, leaning and unpainted sheds, hanging gates, and unpainted property. And we ask our people again to take stock of their own dwellings and properties.

. . .

The following excerpt comes from a much-read magazine:

“Almost every backyard has what every person needs: a way to help cut inflation and ease the world food crisis in the process.

“It’s called ‘land.’ And there doesn’t have to be much of it to help a lot.

“It can be the play area that doesn’t get played on anymore, a sunny plot behind the garage, a 10-foot strip that runs across the back of the lot, or the adjoining lot that was bought to grow grass and play catch on.

“And all you need to make this space lower your food costs is to raise your own vegetables on it.

“It’s been calculated that a carefully managed garden just 15 x 20 feet in size can yield almost $300 worth of fresh food in six months. So the savings can be substantial.”

We are pleased that many people are planting gardens and fruit trees and are buying canning jars and lids. City officials here and many other individuals are planting patches of soil almost equal to the days of the “victory gardens” in World War II. We congratulate those families who are listening and doing.

-thus President Kimball, in the Friday morning session of the April 1975 General Conference.

I love this Church and this people.

By the way, tomatoes are probably the easiest, most economical thing to grow.  If you are going to be in a home for a bit, grapes are also good.  Berries are great but require more effort.  Longer than that, a variety of fruit that grows well in your area.  If you are starting out in your lifelong home, or if you have the pioneer spirit of planting for the benefit of others, then nut trees.

Chickens and rabbits and lambs can also be raised cheap.


Other Posts from the Friday morning session of the April 1975 General Conference:


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