Our gardens can provide us with the very best ingredients in support of our culinary pursuits and also allow us to spend many an enjoyable hour in the variety of work that allows for a certain level of peace and personal satisfaction.

Although modest in size, my garden provides an ample variety of vegetables, fruits, and herbs to come to the table and fills my larder with many treasures that are enjoyed throughout the year.

Let us not forget that the cultivation of the earth is the most important labor of man. When tillage begins, other arts will follow. The farmers, therefore, are the founders of civilization.

Daniel Webster

In addition to the kitchen garden that surrounds my cottage, I also use space in a friend’s truck patch on a nearby farm. Here I grow potatoes and other crops that require a bit more space and cultivate a rather large crop of garlic that I use both at home and in the Stonefly Cafe, as well as retail to the general public.

Time and energy do limit my aspirations for a larger garden, but I have been considering purchasing or leasing additional space so that I can expand my gardening activities to include a small hop house as well as develop a small orchard.

I would encourage each of you to consider this noble pursuit of gardening. No matter what your resources—from a group of small potted herbs on the kitchen windowsill to a backyard patch, urban or rural—the process of getting your hands dirty while providing fresh produce for the table cannot be discounted in the pursuit of a simple well-lived life.