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Photo courtesy of Bluebird Farms

The return of the victory garden

 

As the coronavirus pandemic worsens, one way garden centers are dealing with the fallout is by dusting off a term from the past and encouraging customers to plant victory gardens.

The term was coined during World War I by the National War Garden Commission and promoted through propaganda posters advocating that civilians “Sow the seeds of victory” by planting their own vegetables. It returned to prominence in WWII, during which USDA estimates that more than 20 million victory gardens were planted. Fruit and vegetables harvested in these home and community plots was estimated to be 9-10 million tons.

When James H. Burdett wrote the “Victory Garden Manual” in 1943, the U.S. was more than a year into World War II. Food was scarce. Americans wanted to do something productive and feel self-sufficient.

Managing operations during the coronavirus outbreak

If your garden center, nursery, greenhouse or grower operation is considered an essential business, it’s important to keep your employees and customers safe. Thanks to the folks at Orora Visual Horticulture, you can download these free, ready-to-print signs sharing best-practice methods to curb the spread of COVID-19. These are available in both English and Spanish.

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act gives workers cover at a time when many are out of work due to COVID-19.
Photo: Laura Watilo Blake

5 things to know about the Families First Coronavirus Response Act

On March 18, President Donald Trump signed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act into law. The bill provides paid sick leave requirements and paid family leave requirements to workers affected by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The law went into effect April 1 and will sunset at the end of the year, unless renewed. The bill is designed for businesses with 500 or fewer employees and, if triggered, employers must provide wages for two weeks (up to 80 hours) at the regular rate of pay.