A Brief History of Gardening
Long, long ago in a distant land…people began growing.
We all sort of know gardening has been around forever, but very few people know how it started, much less how it’s morphed into what it is today. So we did some research and made a spiffy little timeline for you.
Behold, the first growers! It all began in the Middle East in a place called the “fertile crescent.” (Things grow really well there.) These neolithics realized that you can take seeds from a plant and grow new ones, which is the basis of all gardening.
about 2,000 BCE
Think pyramids. So far, gardening and farming haven’t really changed that much. Then, an Egyptian king named Ramses III orders servants to grow him a garden. And so with one wish, he changes the future of growing. Ramses makes gardens more than a thing of necessity—it’s now about beauty and leisure. Thus, a thing separate from farming.
1100 BCE -1450 CE
This ginormous chunk of time covers the Ancient Greek and Ancient Roman empires. Let us tell you: these guys were growing pros. They began to specialize ways of growing, and they adored their herb gardens.
Simultaneously, during Medieval times, religious monasteries became the keepers of the garden in Europe. They endowed it with spiritual connotation that still exists today: gardens as a place of calm and contemplation.
This is prime-time Renaissance Era. Art was all the rage, and so design became an integral part of gardening. This is why, if you go to palaces in Europe, they usually have elaborate and perfectly arranged gardens.
Fast forward to the Pilgrims in America. Everyone gardened during this time; it was a means of survival. Also, say hello to Western World originals—like tomatoes and peppers!
With the industrial revolution, the popularity of home gardening really took a hit and farming reigned. Only 40% of Americans had a garden in their home. Until…
You probably know this date from grade school. It’s the beginning of World War II. Because wars consume a lot of money, the U.S. and British governments began encouraging people to grow their own food and be self-sufficient. And people rose to the challenge!
Then to Before Us
After WWII ended, the government had a lot of extra chemicals which they began feeding into the farming processes. Hence, organic growing’s pervasiveness.
Then, the technology boom. The new ways of life and urban expansion made gardening inaccessible and difficult for the average human.
We’re bringing growing back, simpler and more accessible than ever. All the same benefits, but ready for the modern world.
There’s a reason people kept gardening long after survival dictated it. It’s because growing is AWESOME. And now you know the history to back it up.