Friday, August 6, 2010

Harrisonburg, Virginia: Taylor Weidman, Eastern Mennonite University Garden

We met Taylor on our first day in Harrisonburg when Will Hairston was whirlwinding us all around town to meet farmers. Taylor is an energetic fellow, spending part of his summer working with the grounds crew at EMU. Taylor works with compost, chickens, and along with a core of a few other students, maintains the campus garden that supplies the cafeteria in the summer.
The garden is a relatively new addition to campus introduced by a professor in the Bible and Religion department, worked by numerous students, and studied by many of the science classes. There are long prosperous rows of lettuce and the first green globes that will be tomatoes have just began to show up. For Taylor the garden is a great way to experiment; for example he’s implemented the traditional Native American planting style of the three sisters (corn, beans and squash). They are planted together in a mound and they harmoniously thrive; the beans climb up the corn and fix the nitrogen in the ground that the corn needs and the squash provides ground cover.
Taylor is interested in going into ag policy, and he’s a big advocate for buying local because of the positive difference it makes to a local economy. This fall and winter he'll be in Southern Oregon, studying on exchange on the other side of the country!


Post a Comment