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In Gratitude to Farmers

Sondra Gjersoe, our trusty Administrative Assistant shares her love and respect for farmers as a backyard gardener...

I’ve always had a passion for gardening, from the days of growing herbs in pots on the windowsill of my cramped apartment to planting flowers along the front walkway of my house. I never really felt at home without a bit of greenery around to liven up the place. This year I decided (on a bit of a whim, I must confess) to go beyond growing tomatoes and peppers on the patio and begin to dabble a bit more in growing my own fruits and vegetables.

Yes, you read that right -- dabble. But honestly,that was my mindset. Have a bit of fun, grow some of my own veggies, tra-la-la-la-la. And it has been great fun, but it has also been great work. When I wake up, the first thing I do is work in the garden. When I get home from the office, the first thing I do is work in the garden. I’m watering, I’m weeding, I’m composting. I’m fretting about whether that plant is getting the nutrients it needs. I’m on the computer researching natural methods for pest control, and I’m giving every neighborhood bunny the stink eye. I worry that despite all my best efforts, these plants that I’ve nurtured, cared and labored over still may not have what they need to flourish.

And then the first butternut squash makes itself known, the cutest little baby watermelons peak out shyly from their vines. Suddenly I find myself with enough lettuce to feed my family and our neighborhood friends -- a group that has grown as people stop by and chat out of curiosity. Farmers markets have become treasure troves, as I shop I look at the farmers with awe and wonder. I think about the labor, the love, the joys, the hardships, the hours spent working and researching on my own little plot of land and try to scale it upwards. And again I express my awe and wonder… and immense gratitude. Thank you, for your passion and hard work, for your knowledge and skills. Thank you for nourishing and feeding not only the land, but those who inhabit it.

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