Jessi’s story: the smile of eating the first ripe fruit of the season

“I have been a gardener all my life so I have a strong connection with plants of all kinds! Growing up in Colorado and North Idaho, gardening was challenging! So when I moved to Oregon, the gloves were on and I was getting muddy! After several years of trial and error, mostly error, I became a Master Gardener in 2022. I had been seeking a strong community of sustainable gardeners that work with research-based materials and practices for many years. I have been more than pleased with the support and amazing resources available through OSU and look forward to being a part of the Master Gardner community for many years to come!

I am proud to be a part of teaching and sharing researched-based resources and knowledge with all ages as well as encouraging sustainable, organic gardening for generations to come. Seeing the smile on a person’s face when they learn something new, connect to the earth and their peers, or eat their first ripe fruit of the season (or ever) is the most amazing and rewarding sight! Bringing people back to their roots and teaching the many ways gardening brings joy and freedom is also extremely gratifying! 

With our changing climate and society, there is a large push to be more self-sufficient and green in the way we live our lives. I feel like it is a crucial time to spread knowledge and help people get familiar with their environment and innate abilities to grow at least some of their own food, medicine, and craft materials all while helping our natural environment begin to rebalance. Once empowered, I believe people feel more connected to their environment and have a newfound sense of pride and protection for that environment and themselves.”

—Jessi Frank, Lane County Master Gardener

This is but one of the many stories of the OSU Extension Master Gardener program we’re sharing this month in honor of Dam Proud Day. On April 26, Beavers everywhere will come together to support the things we do best: transformative educational experiences and life-changing research.
We are excited to be raising support specifically for our Seed to Supper program and updating our foundational resource, the “Sustainable Gardening Handbook” to reflect current knowledge. Please join us in gathering your friends and colleagues to give to support the Master Gardener Program on Dam Proud Day, at any donation level. See you (online) April 26th!

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