The theme of this Twenty-one Days of Green campaign is to encourage everyone to Commit to Grow just one item that might otherwise be purchased at a grocery store. We love using chives as a place to start. To produce a little container of chives is incredibly simple, but this simple act resonates in surprising ways. It’s an act that we, as consumers, can take to reduce our carbon footprints. Leading up to Earth Day, that seems like a wise choice.

There is much about chives to love. They are perennial, so they’ll grow back after each harvest and continue growing year after year. They are cold tolerant, so if they are protected from hard frost, they will continue to grow all winter. Chives spread very slowly by the division of their bulbous roots, so the first planting will eventually result in a dense clump that can be split into pieces and re-potted — and shared. Chives produce edible flowers that also provide a good food source to bumblebees and other wild pollinators. And they’re tasty, too!

Planting chives is a very straightforward affair, and a superb way to introduce new gardeners to the art of growing food. Here’s Mark on How to Grow Chives:

So that drive to the grocery store and plastic clamshell purchase of chives that have been flown in from Mexico is an option. BUT, growing chives and other container herbs on the patio or windowsill might be kinder to the planet, not to mention the budget.

Join us again tomorrow, and every day leading up to Earth Day on April 22nd, for some more ideas and thoughts on the little ways we can live greener.