May is a month for fresh and new beginnings, for growth, for changing seasons and celebrating our Mothers. Mother Earth is moving in a new direction, making the day length longer and bringing warmer temperatures. For some of us in more northern latitudes, this is a blessing to thaw from the cold of winter and enjoy how spring blossoms. For those in the south, this is the time to enjoy a few more cool nights before the heat of the summer sets in. Celebrating Earth Day helps remind us, that we only have one planet, and we must all help take care of her.
We celebrate Mother Nature and her ability to connect things together into interdependent ecosystems. As aquaponic gardeners and farmers we are given so many learning moments as we try to play the role of mother nature when growing indoors. Often our abilities are just no match for the knowledge and capabilities in each seed, each fish, or each tiny bacteria. We are often reminded of our inexperience and are given so many opportunities to learn from our success and failures.
We celebrate mother fish and their ability to reproduce and provide us with more food (we can celebrate the daddy fish with Dad’s in June). We celebrate the seeds and cuttings that have come from mother plants to carry on their power to grow. And of course we celebrate our human mothers. People who have given life, nurtured, loved and lived through so much to grow children into responsible, healthy and happy human beings.
One of my greatest joys as a mother of 6 year old twins and a 9 year old, has been to watch them grow right along with Flourish Farms, our community aquaponic
greenhouse. They have planted seedlings, helped out at farmers markets, participated in community events and fed the fish since they could crawl. They eat kale like little rabbits, they know how to gut and clean their own fish, and they won the science fair demonstrating the benefits of aquaponics and its importance in growing nutritious food by mimicking a natural ecosystem. As a mom, it means so much to be able to teach and share these valuable life lessons of self-reliance, wellness and environmental stewardship. Not to mention how proud I feel when my kids prefer salad over french fries, and can tell the difference between store bought veggies and ours fresh picked from the aquaponic system. As a mom, that feels like success.