As we patiently await the outcome of our proposal for 2022, we reflect back on this year as it has seemingly flown by again.

Our journey started with 44 gardeners and only had 1 that did not participate. We felt she had a really good reason since she fell and broke her knee caps. We could hardly believe it but we collected harvest reports from every one of our gardeners. Our persistence paid off.

We have had some staffing challenges that we were able to compensate for with the help of a couple of volunteers and a couple of paid staff. When our Project Coordinator, Tim, was assigned 6 weeks of house building work off site and then 2 weeks quarantined, that made for a scramble to to keep up with his day to day duties. Others stepped up to fill in where needed. We cannot thank them enough.

Since we were still pandemic challenged, we were only able to get some of our workshops done in person. It was great when we met together everyone was so excited to chat about the ups and downs of their gardens this year. Production was up this year for most people, cucumbers and tomatoes seemed to be what was the most abundant. One gentleman said to me that he could not give them away fast enough. His Cherokee Purple were the best he has ever had.

My favorite gardener this year, I know I am not to show favoritism, but the little girl pictured was just so adorable when she talked about her garden. She loved her pepper plants the most but ate every cherry tomato as soon as it was ripe. She said it is very hard to wait but if you eat them to soon it is yucky. You have to spit them out and then wait some more.

Again, we cannot thank Grow Appalachia Berea enough for this opportunity to serve our community.