Growing Edibles, Earthquake-Friendly Garden

Growing Edibles, Earthquake-Friendly Garden

Never have I spent so much money at Trader Joe’s. Never have I felt so badly for my Uber driver, who voluntarily lugged a box of bottled water up the steep incline to my apartment. After a series of 4-5 point something Richter-scale earthquakes in the southern California region, my father sent a loving, wise, and panic-inducing email.  Having lived, unprepared, through the 2011 earthquake in Tokyo, Japan, Papa Snaves (as you’re allowed to call him if you should ever have the pleasure) sees some patterns, and advised me on what he wished he had done in the days leading up to the “big one.”

My shelves now stocked with non-perishable cans of tuna, peanut butter, and nuts, I am set to enjoy the. most. disgusting of emergency meals, should the big one hit Los Angeles.  Though I plan to re-stock my wine & chocolate stash to eat by candlelight, to make up for the tuna / peanut butter combo, I now wish I’d planted an edible, earthquake friendly garden to graze when the stores shut down for lack of supplies and / or electricity.

What can you plant that requires no electricity or water to feed you well should an emergency shut down your usual food supply?  According to, “most edibles want ‘full sun,’ or about six hours per day of good quality sunlight. (There are exceptions, like lettuces, which do well in shade.)” And if you’re lucky enough to get more than six hours of sun, take some time in your space to scout out areas that have natural shade as the sun rays shift. Sunset Magazine has a page of links to dig into to tease your edible gardening taste buds. And after you’ve done the work, take a seat on a tree stump and eat straight from your garden, from beans and lettuces to tomatoes and potatoes.

If, like me, your green space in the city is limited, check out for the sizes of containers you need to grow a delicious salad of radish, pepper, cucumber, carrot and more!

And if the big one does not hit, my nerds assure me you’ll still need to be ready for the Zombie Apocalypse. So. Let’s get growing.  (I like the idea of hosting a garden tea party with your local zombies. What do you think would be their favorite veggie?)

Share your stories of eating straight from the garden with us here in the comment section, or over on Twitter, @TheCityFarm & @RebeccaSnavely.

(Photo credit: Tomato Picking: ShutterstockPicking Radishes: HGTV; Garden Party: RentCafe.comThe Walking Dead: AMC)