Since I arrived in Eugene, I have been spending every Saturday morning volunteering at the University of Oregon’s Urban Farm. After putting in a couple hours of work, the director lets me take home a backpack full of goodies. The backpack seems to overflow more and more each week as we enter the full swing of garden season.

The work I do there is the same kind of somewhat mundane garden work I would normally be doing on my urban homestead: weeding, trellising beans, watering, composting, more weeding. The interesting thing about the love for gardening is that we tend to love these mundane activities just as much as we love the exciting planting times. The repetition of care gives us quiet time for thinking. There is peace I find out there digging among the tomatoes and zucchinis that I have a hard time finding when I am surrounded by people.

My own garden is not even remotely where I would want it, but I blame that on old seeds and a really late start. Meanwhile, I am still enjoying zucchini blossoms stuffed with herb goat cheese, purple and “dragon’s tongue” pole beans, pitty-pan squashs, and soon the jewels of summer: tomatoes. I can hardly wait to start digging this Saturday!

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