A diverse offering twixt the interesting, the unusual, and the amusing.
Friday, 18 March 2016
Year-round 'seasonal' growing.
The above is in Spain; in St Augustin, near Almeria to be precise.
They are greenhouses covering an area estimated to be about 40,000 hectares; the biggest area of such 'agriculture' in the world.
The plants grow in an artificial substrate of sand covered in black plastic, and the water supply comes from wherever it can be found; often by drilling deep underground. Many of the workers are illegal immigrants, and the huge resulting crops are exported throughout Europe, and beyond.
A few years back I made the silly mistake of buying an out-of-season bunch of green Asparagus grown in this area, and it was totally tasteless. Shops and markets are full of produce grown under these artificial conditions, and they should be avoided.
I am well aware that Spain relies heavily on the export of fruit and vegs, but I must say that I look very carefully at the origin of any such things that I might buy, and if it says 'Almeria' on the box, I leave well alone.
Buying 'seasonal' may not be easy, but it's worth making as much effort as is practical. Strawberries from Almeria for Christmas may sound like a pleasant idea, but you'd be sorely disappointed.
The difference between an optimist and a pessimist, is that the optimist enjoys himself whilst waiting for the inevitable! I AM that optimist!
This is a daily, optimistic, 'photos and comments' blog. I make no judgements (only occasionally), just notes. If you wish to comment in any way at all, please feel free. Everything and everyone (except the obdurate and dictatorial) is very welcome.
I was born just south of London, but for the past 46 years I've lived in S W France. I am a painter by profession, and writer by desire. Lady Magnon and I live in an ancient cottage, in a tiny village, in perfectly tranquil countryside. We have a vegetable garden called 'Haddock's' (this may crop up from time to time), plenty of fruit trees, and a view that takes the breath away; we also have a Border Collie called Billy. I try to treat our planet with respect, and encourage others to do likewise (without preaching).
Contentment is a glass of red, a plate of charcuterie, and a slice of good country bread. Perfect!