Hi, my name is Kristen and I am currently a forth year student working on my bachelor’s degree in psychology. I’ve always had a passion for the environment, particularly with way we as humans interact with it. Growing up, I have the warmest memories of helping my grandfather in his garden, harvesting green beans, tomatoes, and much more. My grandfather always inspired me to build a small garden of my own and I know I will grow so much through this internship. I am very excited for the upcoming semester!
Hi everyone! I’m a junior majoring in Chemistry and Environmental Chemistry with a minor in Spanish. I’m interning as a herb intern this fall, because I’ve always been interested in understanding the chemical process of extracting healing properties from plants to create medicine, especially since all currently used medicine is a variation of herbs and plants found in nature. I also hope to understand and learn more about botany, and how different chemical properties used in different agricultural techniques can affect the growth and conditions of plants. Not only will this help me understand more about plants, but it will also help me better my understanding about the environment, especially its importance in how organisms and natural elements are connected in the ecosystem.
I am taking this internship to learn about gardening and the work that goes into cultivation of different harvests. I hope to learn whether I want to make garden maintenance part of my career, or at least a long-term hobby. I am also taking an Herbs, Spices, and Medicinal Plants lecture class, so I am looking forward to relating the two courses to each other, since I am very passionate about teas and herbal remedies. I’ve attached a photo of myself and my 12-year-old brother, Michael. 🙂
If you told me a year ago I’d be starting a Masters Program at UGA studying medicinal herbs and getting to work at the mecca that is UGArden, I would think I had died and gone to heaven.
School is one of my favorite things in the world; reveling in Nature’s exquisite design is my other favorite thing. However, in the realms of academia, it’s pretty difficult to find a program that feeds this “heady” passion. I attribute my restless fascination with nature and humanity’s dependence on its proper functioning to my time as an undergrad at Sewanee (YSR!). My professors were incredible and unleashed a curiosity within me that has yet to wane; they inspired me to dive into my passions no matter the fear that may stir inside.
As an undergrad, I studied Ecology and Religion, and when my 4 years was up, I had to keep learning. I found ways to sustain my interest in the intersection of nature, humans, and spirituality by apprenticing my way through the southeast. I worked on farms practicing biodynamics and permaculture design. I got my Master Gardener training and worked for a wild mushroom expert, pulling techniques from the many facets of growing and living off the land (and often times, contradictory techniques!). I found an herbalist who mentored me and taught me how to turn plants into medicine. In herbalism, I really found my passion: herbal medicine, to me, represents the perfect union of humanity’s dependence on nature’s abundance for health and healing.
I am interning at UGArden so I can continue learning how to better understand and utilize nature’s gifts. In particular, I’ll be working on the medicinal herb garden, helping to streamline growing, harvesting, processing, and record-keeping techniques. As a Master of Agribusiness student, I want to direct my research on finding ways to make UGArden’s medicinal herb plot a more self-sufficient machine, making a profit through its medicinal herb production and reconnecting the community with a sustainable form of medicine that grows right down the road.
This was my last week of a wonderful 12 week adventure. The final chapter of a really colorful book. On Tuesday we harvested basil, clover, roses and we weeded the rest of the herb garden. On Wednesday we harvested okra, and I personally dead-headed all the Zinnias. On Thursday, we all went our separate ways after having a nice tea-party. Later than night I cried like a baby knowing this great internship was over.
This week the flamethrower made an appearance at UGArden. A little fire was all we needed to clear the weeds along our fence!
Our muscadine vines are starting to fill up with fruit! Earlier this week we had to trim off some of the grapes because the vines were going overcrowded with fruit. The fruit will start to ripen soon.