What is Earth Day? Defined by Wikipedia, “Earth Day is an annual event celebrated around the world on April 22 to demonstrate support for Environmental protection. First celebrated in 1970, it now includes events coordinated globally by the Earth Day network in more than 193 countries.”
This “virus,” which is what I am going to simply say at this point because if you are like me you are absolutely sick and tired of seeing either of the names used to describe this thing, has been keeping us in the house during some of the most beautiful weather across the county. It is so hard to be cooped up in the house during the one day of the year that is truly about outdoor activities and taking care of our wonderful Earth.
There are ways to still show that you care about the earth through projects you can do at home as well as things you can do outside and still practice social distancing. One thing you can do is plant a home garden that will feed you through the summer months as well as the very early fall. I decided to ask Arts Connector Bailey Wingler, who runs what she calls her “Urban Farm” in the city of Salisbury, a couple of questions.
1. When did you start the farm?
Well, first, I use the term “farm” very loosely. It formed as a joke over the years and just sort of stuck. We are located central to Downtown Salisbury and had to overcome the challenge of more cement than grass. Over five years ago, I had a severe reaction to poison ivy and had to kill everything in my yard to try and get rid of it. My husband patiently dug it all up, roots and all. I was terrified to garden. Then, one sunny day we came across some large shipping crates online. We repurposed them and made raised planters, and we have been growing from there ever since.
2. What do you love most about your farm?
My favorite part about Wingler Farm is that it provides me a sort of oasis. I grew up in the country. I could look up and see the stars. I could hear the birds sing, and I have that now, right in the middle of town!
3. What do you currently have in your garden?
We currently have two raised planters that measure approximately 2 feet by 9 feet. I have multiple containers and a garden in the ground. We grow a variety of herbs. I love lemon-y things like lemon thyme and lemongrass. We planted around 50 plants for Spring and will plant more later in the year. I love to put lots of rainbow chard around my patio area. It’s so beautiful!
4. What are some ways you and your family will celebrate Earth Day?
My family will more than likely be spending Earth Day outside, doing what we do best, tending to our little plot and showing it lots of love. We are currently building a pond for our ducks to enjoy and we are looking forward to watching them play in it!
Other Home Earth Day Experiences
I live in Mt. Ulla and, as beautiful as it is, there are still plenty of things that can be done to celebrate Earth Day. During this time, we pick up all loose limbs and tidy up the yard. We make sure there is no trash, plastic bottles or anything that can harm the birds as they are making nests in the trees.
If you are looking for some stay at home Earth Day projects, check out this list of projects that you can complete safely at home. You can find many of the projects on Pinterest or enter a Google search! Listed are pictures as well as links to a couple of my favorites.
- Bird Feeders are so fun and they bring the reward of seeing birds take nibbles of them. Here is a great project to complete with children.
- Feel like taking a walk? Then do an outdoor scavenger hunt!! Go to this link in order to download the printable chart that you can use to mark when you find the items!! Have fun hunting!
- Another great way to teach recycling of clothes to children, is to have them select clothes they are willing to donate. Once they have a bag full, take them to goodwill to drop off. Since Goodwill is not open and we are still practicing social distance, you can have them Facetime their friends and see if they would pick items, they would give to them. Have them place the other child on the item and place it in a bag. With promises to give it to them the next time they see each other! It’s a neat way to teach sharing as well.
- Last but not least, you can always, just go outside and express gratitude to all that you see that is nature around you.
With so many of us having to stay home, no matter Earth Day or any day, take the time to get outside and enjoy what nature has given you to enjoy. You can do so many fun things outside!!