Locally grown. 1

My grandpa was an Idaho farmer who always had a huge garden full of corn, tomatoes, radishes, raspberries and blue ribbon prize winning banana squash. I spent many hot summer days eating strawberries right off the vine while “helping” grandpa husk corn for dinner.

Nothing tastes better than fresh, locally grown produce, especially if you helped grow it. Each year as my husband and I help our little girls plant and eventually harvest their very own tomatoes, I can’t help but reflect on summers past.

I remember the year my daughter Hannah planted a cabbage hoping to take it to the fair. As the cabbage grew bigger and bigger, so did Hannah’s anticipation of following in her Great Grandpa Beck’s blue ribbon footprints. Then tragedy—in the form of a small animal—struck and Hannah’s cabbage was decimated. As she looked at her demolished cabbage, tears welled up in her eyes because her cabbage was more than just produce. It was something she had watched grow from a tiny seed into something majestic that had the potential to feed many.

Like the garden we plant each year, our children are also locally grown. The Treasure Valley helps shape who they are and who they will become. Let’s work together to make this beautiful valley a welcome treasure for generations to come. Watch for our feature article about the Tomato Independence project on page 18 to learn more about the importance of locally grown produce. Also check out how members of our community help refugees from around the world grow their own gardens on page 14. I hope these stories and the others in this issue serve to inspire our community.