Dirty Hands Diaries – June 6, 2023

by | Jun 13, 2023 | Dirty Hands Diaries | 0 comments

Time in the Green & Gold Community Garden

The day is hot and the sun leans heavily on my shoulders and back. I’m swathed against it like Dracula’s groupie. A big brimmed hat, long sleeved shirt, gloves, a face mask, and a mineral sunscreen that makes my naturally pale skin glow in the dark complete my ensemble. I’m wearing my own portable steam sauna.

Each volunteer I meet is friendly, open, happy. Many are wearing shorts and T-shirts. All are wearing satisfied smiles. I have just joined a vibrant community of creators.

I’m happily surprised at how simple it is for me to slip into the group here. I was told in orientation: do what you can, what you want to, and for as long or as short as you want. No commitment of schedules. No guilt. Just a collection of committed grown-ups sharing a love for playing in the dirt.

My own yard is benefiting from my time spent in the G&G Garden. Surprisingly, I find myself more motivated to step outside and tend to my plants. I find gardening an act of faith. Prepare the soil, plant the seed, water, weed, and wait. And repeat this cycle many, many times over the growing season. And then, miracles…

The emerging green sprouts are a silent song for the soul. The dirt under my fingernails contains micro-organisms that even out anxiety and depression, studies are indicating. ‘Grounding’ might be aptly applied to a session in a garden. No matter how much I dread the heat and sun, the uplifting nourishment from the simple manual tasks of this organic gardening among the company of like-minded folk feeds a strong need within me. Connecting with the earth and interacting with such friendly human beings is hugely satisfying. I learn something, and I share some of my knowledge. Fantastic.

Ruth Yanor
Green & Gold Community Garden Volunteer

To all our devoted volunteers and customers. We have started a blog called the Dirty Hands Diaries for your reading pleasure. The purpose of the blog is to share your reflections of the garden throughout the growing season. Anyone can submit an entry by sending it to us at: gggarden@ualberta.ca.