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  • Maria Vandervert

A Passion to Grow Something Better

By Maria Vandervert, Published by The Huckleberry Press

Growing up I helped my grandma in her garden and cooked with her in the kitchen when I was a kid. She grew her own food, prepared it, picked it, cooked it, baked it, dried it, fermented it, and froze it. She even made her own weird off the beaten path wine to complement dinner – Dandelion Wine. She had in those days what was called a left-over ‘Victory Garden’ to help ease the pressure on food supply during the war. Of course, by the time I was born, Victory Garden’s were fading, as industrial agriculture continued to grow.

I guess something took hold and stuck with me about the power of growing your own food and the miracle of life that a seed holds. Food is at the center of life in every way – in our homes, at our dinner table, at the store, and in schools and hospitals. I never forgot that garden experience as a kid, and as I got older and learned more, I became increasingly concerned about the health of people and our planet. 

I learned where my food came from, how it was grown and prepared, and about the consequences of intensive monoculture and factory farming. I learned about the importance of healthy soil and how a  decline in soil health impacts human health. We are just at the precipice of understanding the complexities of this living world beneath our feet and its ability to sequester carbon and create healthy ecosystems.  READ MORE

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