Let's turn Sacramento into Silicon Valley East?


This article, which appeared in today's Sacramento Bee, say's, "the Farm-to-Fork boast is all wrong for a town that yearns to be Silicon Valley East...It’s time to step away from the world-class provincialism that has long constrained Sacramento. Let go of the images of our agricultural past, lest our economic future be limited to farm-to-forklift jobs."

The article describes how Silicon Valley, "which once laid claim to being the world’s canning and dried-fruit packing capital, shrugged off its rich agricultural heritage. Along with neighboring San Mateo County, it embraced a new moniker: Silicon Valley." 

Why do we want so badly to shrug off our rich agricultural heritage? We want the overcrowding, and sky high housing costs of Silicon Valley here?

I find it weird that a population that seems to thrive on the "idea" of local farming, and locally sourced food, would want to emulate Silicon Valley, a once wondrous farmland turned into sprawl. I have no desire to see our region turned into Silicon Valley East, though it's headed in that direction. Where shall we grow our food if all the best agricultural land is paved over? Sacramento needs to get over wanting to be "somewhere else" (Silicon Valley this time), and figure out how to be itself, in all its agricultural glory. 

Millennials in the garden

According to this article in The Telegraph, Monty Don, an English horticulturist and TV host say's we shouldn't waste our time trying to convince Millennials into the garden. According to Don, "I think we put far too much interest in trying to get ten to 20 year olds interested in gardening. I think you should do everything you can to try and get them interested up to the age of 10.” 

I agree. No one pushed me into horticulture, or the garden. My interest developed on it's own without any encouragement from the trade. As Don say's, "When you’re 15 whatever your parents tell you you should do, you’re not going to do it. Any self respecting 15-year-old [will rebel] and so they should."

"I think much better to make sure they have access to it up to the age of 10 and of course don’t take it away at that point, and just let them come.”

The marketing attempts from most of the trade organizations geared towards millennials fall on deaf ears. Millennials will migrate to the garden on their own, if they choose. Likely it will be the realization that in the garden the hope for our future rests. Not with new technology, new media, or slick ad campaigns, but in the garden where one can make a difference that is real and dynamic. Horticulture is the future, and millennials will realize that when they do.