Striving for Victory – Dig for Victory


My apologizes for taking so long to post May’s Striving for Victory Challenge.  In my defense, the sun was shining and it was time to get busy in the garden.

One of the strategies attempted by Germany to overcome the British people was to starve them into submission.  During the Battle for the Atlantic, U-boats were used by the German navy to prevent merchant ships from reaching Great Britain and delivering nourishment to a hungry nation. The Axis did not did not succeed due in part to the Dig for Victory campaign.

On the eve of World War Two, the UK imported 75% of its calories. By 1941, food grown on the homefront reduced Britain’s reliance on imported food by half.  Homegrown potatoes, carrots, and cabbage not only feed families and the troops but they also freed up valuable shipping space so that troops and equipment could be transported to the front.

This month we pay homage to our foremothers by getting our hands dirty and digging for victory.

The Rules:

  • Grow something to eat. A big garden full of heirloom vegetables, a pot of tomatoes on your balcony, or herbs on your window sill all count.

The Wartime Kitchen & Garden available on Youtube provides an glimpse into gardening during the Dig for Victory campaign.


Growing our own food is not the only challenge this month as the Battle for Fuel rages on.

To help conserve fuel, we gave up single use plastic shopping bags, plastic water bottles, and disposable take-out coffee cups, hopefully forever.  Since fossil fuel is used in the production of fertilizer, this month we conserve this valuable resource by composting our organic, household waste.

Composting was encouraged by The Ministry of Agriculture to replenish the soil and because the chemicals used to make fertilizers were required by the war effort. The Ministry published educational leaflets and movies such as this one:


Fashion on the Ration

Shipping space was at a premium during the Battle for the Atlantic.  This month we reduce our reliance on imported fashion by creating a new article of clothing or household item from our old worn out clothes.  I am working on using wool from an old sweater to make myself a new one.  I know that H is also working on a project.




If you Dig for Victory this month, leave a comment and tell us all about it or post a picture of your accomplishments on the hip roof barn facebook page or on instagram with the hashtag #strivingforvictory.


If you want to join in, please do! We would love to hear about your experiences. If you have a wartime story to tell, please leave a comment. Stories are an important way to keep the memories of our mothers and grandmothers alive. And one more request, if you enjoy or find value in any of our posts, please consider making a donation to Sheepdog Lodge to support those for whom the horrors of war are not in the past.

  • Our Pintrest board

If you have any other resources we can tap into, please include them in the comments.




  1. My parents would tell us stories from when they had to live through rationing and even after the war, there were restrictions on the importation of many goods. One story that sticks with me is one year my grandmother had a lodger stay with them for the summer, and she brought with her a box of oranges as a present. This was a tremendous occasion and very exotic as import restrictions weren’t lifted until the mid 50s, so my grandmother wondered where to hide them until she was going to use them. She hid them in the stove. Which was all well and good…until one day she needed to light it….

    Well done for being so frugal. I have taken the plunge and have bought some tomato seeds to try, and I will also do nasturtiums again this year as they did really well last year.


  2. That Cooking and Gardening video link is a real treasure! thanks for posting it.
    Our weather has been so wildly erratic and bizarre….only just put out my herb pots in the front of my house and added several gifted hi-yield tomato and pepper plants specific for growing in containers. Time and more strange weather will tell……

    Still using kale, broccoli and various other sprouts as my main veggie source until the seasons change and new season veg are plentiful and affordable.

    Have been squirreling some cash and have offered my lovely young neighbor the summer long job of cleaning and helping to restore my madly overgrown. and destroyed backyard garden plot. At one time, despite my neighbors trees, I was able to grow a respectable amount of veg, greens . herbs and flowers in a small plot. It was a real joy for me and many of my apartment house dwelling friends.

    The past five years have seen such fluctuating weather. with massive rains interspersed with unusually high temps and fierce wind, that gardening as usual came to a halt. this resulted in a strange array of invasive plants and a killer bind weed infestation. It’s like a cheapness monster movie back there!

    Now, a number of the surrounding trees are gone [ victims of tree hating new owners as well as the same weather shift] I hope to re-start the garden, once it has been cleared and the invasives have been smothered.
    I’m hoping to re-learn to garden with all the changes that have occurred…. I know things are not returning to what was… so I must change as well.

    Clothing-wise I have embraced The School of Visible Mending and Tom of Holland’s blog, and have been repairing, rejuvenating and and making visual art and political statements with my patches and mends!
    This is quite a change, as I was well trained in needle arts but never ever was anything to be visible!!! I’m enjoying this change immensely.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You are rocking the Make do and Mend way of life. The weather every where is a little odd. I’ve got my fingers crossed that this year will be a productive year.

      I hear you on doing battle with the invasive weeds. Crab grass is a constant threat here and I can’t even begin to think about what I am going to have to do to finally be free of the Japaneses Knotweed at the side of the house. Its too close to the house to douse with gas and set on fire!

      Good tip on eating sprouts. I had not even thought of sprouts as a viable alternative.


  3. Reblogged this on Just another Day on the Farm and commented:
    I just adore the year long challenge that my fellow Canadian blogger has taken on, and I have been waiting for the announcement of the victory garden.. I have a little copy of the official victory garden and how, what to grow and I am very interested in learning more.. I will be joining them in the garden part. I have been reducing energy costs and I already shop second hand most of the time. I do not want it to take away from the may challenge. so I will not be talking about it more then once a week max

    Liked by 1 person

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