My name is Madeline and I’m a summer intern at the Airlie Local Food Project Garden. What an experience this has been! I was so excited to have this opportunity and yet very nervous that I didn’t know enough and wouldn’t be able to do this job well.
My first day I put on my farming clothes (old shorts and shirt) and got to the garden at a bright and early 8:00 AM. The garden is so beautiful and Pablo and Brynn introduced me to the other intern, Lauren. Everyone has been so nice and patient with me as I learn. I’ve learned that gardening is hot, sweaty, buggy, dirty, and a muddy mess sometimes, but extremely rewarding! It’s been so great to see the plants that I’ve planted thrive and it feels great knowing that they produce healthy food for others.
Now that my time as a garden intern is ending, I’ve seen that gardening is full of surprises. One of the biggest for me was an odd-looking “cucumber” plant in the bed of cucumbers! It seemed to grow bigger and bigger every day, far out-growing its fellow cucumber plants. We had no idea what would become of this weed/cucumber plant. After observing for a few weeks, we realized it was no cucumber plant, but an unusual (and still unidentified) pumpkin/squash plant! So like in life, amazing surprises can come from unexpected places.
I’ve learned more about gardening and seen how much impact one garden can have on so many people, and I’m honored to have had the opportunity to work here.