Gardener Story: Meme Ansbro

Thyme to Turnip the Beet!

My name is MeMe and I’m 34. I am from Northern California but I’ve lived in East Tennessee for 13 years on one and a half acres of farmland on the Greene County line. I am a stay at home mom and caregiver to a niece and nephew. I’m pretty creative, crafty, and good with construction. Most things I’ve learned were through trial and error or self taught.

I’ve always thought you either had a green thumb or you didn’t. Through this program I’ve learned everyone has a green thumb. You just need to learn how to use it. Thanks to Build it Up East TN, Lexy , Rosie, the volunteers, and everyone else that has made this program possible. I’ve gained the confidence and knowledge I need to grow fresh organic food, herbs, and flowers for my family, animals, and wild pollinators to enjoy.

This journey has not been without hiccups but with the BIU program I’ve learned things (and pests) happen! It’s all a learning experience and things will get better with preparations in the future. Being able to have access to the BIU Facebook group has been great to see other people progress and their hiccups as well. It’s a positive, uplifting community of hard working, kind hearted people who have made a difference in my journey.

Without going into too much personal information, being in this program during the last two years through Covid has been tremendously valuable for my mental and physical health. There is just something so peaceful and consoling about digging dirt during the early morning dew to prepare for fresh plants to thrive in, even though it feels as though the world around you is crumbling. I garden and grow organic because I believe in the future sustainability of our Earth and all those who inhabit it. So get out there and grow, I’m rootin’ for ya! Thank you all so very much!

More images from Meme’s garden!