July 12, 2009 [LINK / comment]

Church garden project

Emmanuel Episcopal Church made the front page of the News Leader about three weeks ago, regarding the effort made by many parishioners to cultivate a large vegetable garden at the farm of a long-time church member, Dave Rapp. Every summer Dave brings in large quantities of fresh produce, and the money donated for the food is allocated to a charity fund. He isn't able to do the work himself anymore, however, so the rest of us are pitching in. This year, because of the rising unemployment rate in the area, they are donating the proceeds and some of the produce itself, to the Blue Ridge Food Bank. I have managed to make it out there to help with gardening duties four times so far. Yesterday was the hardest task yet, clearing out the weeds and vines that were choking the asparagus bushes. (They didn't harvest them this year, but let them go to seed.) Besides producing the food itself, this is a wonderful opportunity for socializing with fellow church members, and I look forward to more honest, productive labor in the weeks to come.

Dave Rapp's Garden

Meneta Deaton (green shirt) and Randy Hamblett (left, with hat) were among the parishioners who gathered to do weeding and planting chores on Saturday. The empty rows are where beets and lettuce were recently harvested; they have planted pumpkins and other fall crops in those areas. On the right are several dozen tomato plants. In the background, across the creek, is the second garden, which is mostly corn (much of which has been eaten by deer), as well as more tomatoes and squash. This photo will also be posted on the emmanuelstaunton.org Web site. Click on the image to see it in full size.

"As ye sow, so shall ye reap!"