Columns / Discourse / October 9, 2008

Garden Patch: The legendary skill of gardening

There is much to be said about the value of gardening. The legendary skill of gardening has allowed for the prosperity and progress of mankind. All over the world, the wisdom of producing food is an unsurpassed talent that can sustain villages and feed families. In fact, organizations such as Heifer International spread the knowledge of sustainable farming to those in need with the understanding that knowhow will last forever, whereas buying food lasts a meal.

In an age where food is readily available with the swipe of a credit card, we take for granted the labor and care that goes into our produce. Moreover, we rely on this magical source of food for survival. Do you recall the salmonella scare this summer? First we were told “don’t eat tomatoes,” a staple product, and then “don’t eat peppers.” Gardens create an independence from the grocery store and factory farm produce. When your green thumb has raised those tomatoes, you know they’ll be trustworthy (and delicious).

Aside from the satisfaction you get from eating food that you’ve watched grow (it never ceases to amaze me that a little seed weeks later is your dinner!), gardening has proven to be therapeutic. Personally, I’ve found the garden to be a wonderful way to brainstorm and relax. While you’re physically getting a workout (and a bit of a tan), you also give your brain the space to throw ideas around.

This summer, I worked on research while tending the Knox Community Garden. Although I enjoyed being in the lab, I did a lot of my thinking while working in the dirt (plus it was nice to be outside). Whether you work with someone and use the garden for socializing or you work alone and just enjoy the peacefulness, the Knox Community Garden is a wonderful way to spend a portion of your week.

The Fall Harvest Hoedown will be Saturday October 25 at noon. There will be live bluegrass while we harvest and prep the garden for the winter. That afternoon we’ll host a tasty pot-luck with goodies from the garden. Also, pick a pumpkin in time for Halloween! Stay tuned…

Please come join us Saturdays from 12 p.m.-2 p.m. on the corner of First and West. Part of gardening is spreading the wisdom, so no experience is required. Hope to see you there!

Kathleen Beeson

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