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March 20, 2009

Spot climate change in your backyard

Posted: 04:54 PM ET

As you may have read, the Obamas are planting a vegetable garden. Seem like big news? Perhaps not, but I have a feeling one reason this tidbit is currently the No. 1 read story on the NYTimes homepage is that many Americans are itching for a lost connection to the land and the outdoors.

spring bloom

Some see the organic garden as a distraction from Obama’s gaffe over the Special Olympics or the ever-present AIG bonus debate, but it seems like it also hits on something larger.

Just take a look at what iReporters are saying about what they’ve learned from past generations about saving money and fending for themselves. (Post your 'victory garden' stories here). Many bring up gardens. And, in a recent interview with a four-generation family, younger members talked about how they wish they had the same survival skills their grandparents did. Gardening is chief among them.

I’m no master gardener. I tried for the first time last year: the jalapenos and Roma tomatoes were delicious, but mostly were overshadowed by the hip-high weeds that I let grow up between them most of the summer. But it was fun to try.

So, in that spirit, here are a couple tips for trying out your green thumb and learning a bit of science this season:

1. Become a volunteer scientists: Hoards of backyard scientists across the country again are participating in Project BudBurst. Check out their Web site and be part of a group effort to map the blooming of plants. Your small effort can help scientists track big trends, like climate change.

2. Learn about your local environment: Check out this USA Today story on planting maps - they’re changing, perhaps because of global warming. Learn what the climate is like in your area to better understand what will grow and when.

3. Find local food: Across the country people are banding together and sharing resources to get fresh food locally. Some join food coops, others, like guerrilla gardeners, take over public spaces to make group gardens. Local farmers' markets are another option.

Feel free to share you stories in the comments or on iReport.

Filed under: climate change • environment • gardening • science

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Franko   March 20th, 2009 6:52 pm ET

"Banning Organic Farming & Regulating Home Gardening, HR 875 & S 425"

Who will win Michelle or Barrack ?
Will she build a greenhouse and spike it with 2,000 ppm evil poision CO2 ? (from the whitehouse CO2 fire extinguishers) - And cause runaway growth and prosperity - beanstalk to space ?

Michelle Obama

"White House Garden To Feed City During Recession - Michelle Obama plans to create a 1,100-square-acre garden on the White House lawn, to teach America how to not be fat"

Perhaps, Michelle Obama intends to stay, in the Whitehouse, past the 8 years - Resolve Monsanto, Goofy Gore and Bible Thumping Creatives - and then be successful, unlike Hillary ?

CB_Brooklyn   March 20th, 2009 10:32 pm ET

For the truth on climate change, see the "chemtrails and climate" section...

Franko   March 21st, 2009 3:55 am ET

CB_Brooklyn - “For the truth on climate change,”
Local; Some - Long Term Global temperature average change – No

“Optical depth, (number of free photon paths from top to bottom in the atmosphere), is a measure of how opaque the atmosphere is to long-wave radiation, (InfraRed), and so is a measure of the strength of the greenhouse effect” - For all the human activities; “Earth’s Optical Depth has not changed during the last 60 years.”

Earth is in Greenhouse Gas Effect Saturation - Increasing the effect of one greenhouse gas, removes the effect of another - As indicated by the constant optical depth, despite increased CO2.

Franky   March 21st, 2009 10:25 am ET

You know, maybe not long ago we were watching Tomato Tree way, way into the evening. ...Ohh yeah, of course we wanna grow our high-tech tomatoes, LOL!!

Tomatoes baby, tomatoes...

Franko   March 22nd, 2009 1:12 am ET

Two summers ago, there were lots of mosquitoes, frogs croaking all night - saw one frog last summer, and only a few mosquitoes and no little froggies. - what is happening ? - The poision called CO2 ? The Sun is so lethatgic, without bailout money, for Sunspots ? - research grants could create lots of jobs and save our Planet !

earthpromise   March 22nd, 2009 8:38 am ET

Starting your own garden–whether it be an herb garden in your widow sill or a larger one with a variety of vegetables–is just one of the many promises you can make to help make a difference. If gardening doesn't work for you, even buying local
( is a great step in lightening your footstep.

Be sure to visit, to start making your promises!

Andrew Johnson   March 22nd, 2009 8:42 am ET

Hmmm – so what causes grids in the skies? Regular air traffic? If that's true, then why can't anyone give me details of these flights?

CO2 saturation? Where's the evidence for that? How is is measured? And what about this?

Ah yes, just a coincidence – which people on the east coast weren't warned about, it seems....

Global warming! It would be a great source of entertainment if it weren't so serious an indication of how much science has become corrupted and ignores the most important evidence of all.

Grace K   March 22nd, 2009 10:06 am ET

Everyone just about has heard of the 4-H club but have you heard of the Master Gardeners program? Look in your local phone book or online for your area under the "Cooperative Extension Service" or "Master Gardeners Program". These are groups of well trained and supervised volunteer staff numbering in the Thousands across America. Their services are FREE to you. It is their mission to educate and enhance the public in consumer horticulture. It provides educational assistance to the citizens concerning lawns, fruits, vegetables, trees & ornamentals. These are every day folks who just love to garden & share what they know. You too can be a Master Gardener. You are only a Click or phone call away!

MichaelB   March 22nd, 2009 11:08 am ET

It's time to move on from the "gaffe." I have. I did about ten seconds after he said it. The guy is the President, and you are not. He's going to say dumb things every now and then and they will be televised.

Franko   March 22nd, 2009 1:20 pm ET

Andrew Johnson "CO2 saturation?"

Greenhouse effect saturation - Works like this - add more CO2
CO2 and H2O below, wevelengts overlap, trap a little extra near the surface
CO2 above radiates the heat (cools) - lowering where H2O freezes out

In Antarctica, you would expect the cooling effect of CO2 (little sunshine)
In the Tropics, greater wind speed and moisture tansport (rain)
Atmosphere, a steam engine, exra heat at bottom, but extra cooling on top

Andrew Johnson   March 22nd, 2009 4:02 pm ET

Franko – there MAY be more CO2 – but what is the saturation point? Saturation has a particular meaning – no more can be put in the atmosphere. How is this measured? In truth, no one can be sure whether the CO2 follows an increase in temperature on global scale. The IPCC report is basically a scam – and some scientists who participated withdrew support when they saw the conclusions.

Why are people ignoring the clear evidence of active weather modification and control? Didn't look at the Erin on 9/11 study?

CO2 did that? You're serious? Wow. Short on time?

Check this:

10 minutes. Also worth checking out why/how industrial processes don't need to produce any CO2 from burning fuel – because the tech that was used to destroy the WTC can also be used for fueless energy systems. Far out ay? So you'll need to check the evidence....

Franko   March 22nd, 2009 4:44 pm ET

Andrew Johnson
"Franko – there MAY be more CO2 – but what is the saturation point?"

There is negative feedback - Plants, hungry for food need CO2 to reproduce
GigaYears ago, Used to be all CO2 - then plants produced poision O2

Saw guesses, all the Coal Plants, unlikely to get Earth, beyond 700 ppm
Greenhouses, modify the air inside, to more than 1,000 ppm CO2

So, the upper steady state limtt for CO2 ?? - Any Gaia biologist, reading this, have an equation, relating Bio Plants, Coal Plants, and Solar Flux ?

S Callahan   March 22nd, 2009 4:46 pm ET

I'm surprised you didn't mention the 4-H programs...for both inner city and rural folks..they'll teach you everything you need to know in farming...and even let you enter in contests for the best produce.
There are zillions of local programs are your local city hall and they should provide the contact for you.

I farmed as a child...grew up in an orphange..and it was a means to eat healthy foods, get fresh air, and make money.....I still love turning the land. It brings you back to your 'real you'.

S Callahan   March 22nd, 2009 4:54 pm ET

Andrew, I have also see those grid marks in the sky....sometimes very strange......

Franko   March 22nd, 2009 5:11 pm ET

Postulate, supercooled, then something triggers the droplet formation ?
Not flying pink pigs with sloppy lipstick, too big - Bats chasing dragonflies
Micrometeorites ? NSA miniature dones, spying for U$a ?

David of Colorado   March 23rd, 2009 7:00 am ET

Unlike Al Gore who gets a free pass by buying "carbon credits" while his millions square foot home is kept at a constant 68.54 degrees year round by way of fossil fuel burning, at least the Obamas are applying some real green ideas to their lives.

Franko   March 23rd, 2009 1:55 pm ET

Michelle Obama, might go as far as to build a GreenHouse, to protect the crop from the cold - And do the unthinkable, - test Goofy Gore's Climate Runaway Fantasy– tipping to Venus temperatures due CO2 ?? (try 1 part per thousand CO2 - 2 parts - then 1% CO2 - 100% ? - how does the temperature rise, how do the plants grow - we gotta know ! )

The result could sace Trillions, not just for U$ -
We would not have to bomb the world into CO2 tax submission

Tim - San Francisco   March 26th, 2009 4:50 pm ET

Wow, I'm literally shocked by what I've read. Most of what I've read sounds like mindless rantings from individuals with serious mental problems. It may be time for you to take your medications. The rest of you can barely spell and putting together words to make a complete sentence which can then be communicated into a logical intelligent thought seems to be difficult for the majority. You all are giving people who just want to get back in touch with the Earth and put their fingers in the dirt and maybe understand a little more where their food comes from a bad name. It's the super idiots like you who are bringing this country down. I mean come on growing beanstalks to space, what are you a four year old?

And what's the big deal anyway? We all know the more plants grown means less CO2 in the air and more O2. That's what plants do, their fuel is CO2, their waste is O2. This isn't rocket science people and the Earth has been doing this dance for billions of years. It's our survival as humans who live on this planet along with many other animal species that's at stake.

Franko   April 2nd, 2009 12:37 pm ET

“And what’s the big deal anyway?”

Runaway government control, is the Ultimate Doom– (not CO2)
How will Michelle Obama’s garden be regulated ?
Will she receive cash for the CO2 sequistered ?
Big problems if she makes dandelion vine ? ( root beer is ok ? )

Sean Perry   May 1st, 2010 12:15 am ET

Climate Change is really scary, now we have super typhoons and a lot of flooding going on some countries..`."

Isabel Russell   August 12th, 2010 5:53 pm ET

it is very evident that climate change is already taking effect in this decade;`.

PCSO Lotto Results    October 18th, 2010 6:44 pm ET

Climate Change really causes the formation of bigger tornadoes and bigger typhoons too.~"

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