Good Growing

Time to say goodbye after six years

Posted: Jul. 29, 2018 12:01 am

In a past article, I wrote about how the garden and landscape are fluid things and constantly changing. Trees grow taller and yards become more shaded or a tree comes down and sunlight brightens a once shady spot. As gardeners we are always learning and growing, and that is one thing about my career that I adore -- I am always learning. Whenever someone says they have a question, usually my light hearted response is I might have an answer, and I usually get a laugh. If I honestly don't have an answer I tell people I'm not sure, that I will find an answer and along with it I will learn something new.

Over the past six years as a horticulture educator with University of Illinois Extension I have had the honor to help countless people learn new things and in turn learned many new things myself. The Good Growing column and blog began three and half years ago and during that time I was able to share my love and passion for gardening, plants and the outdoors. There were definitely weeks where it was down to the wire for writing articles when I was struggling for an idea to write about and thank goodness for colleagues, friends, and family for saying "Hey, what about this topic?" It saved me a number of times over the years. Writing every other week could be a struggle so those who write columns on a daily basis, I applaud you.

Over the life of just the Good Growing online blog posts alone, my colleagues and I have written over 170 articles and those blog posts received over 107,000 hits. My hope is that everyone that reads a Good Growing article walks away with a new piece of information that might positively influence their life or just provides them with new knowledge.

This week's article was an easy topic to choose but a hard article to write. Just as gardening is fluid and changing, life is as well. I became engaged back in December to a wonderful man who lives three and half hours away (how's that for irony -- same length of time I've written Good Growing articles). That distance is coming to an end when we close on my house here in Illinois, and I will be moving to a new state to start a new life, which is very exciting. I am also sad as my last day with University of Illinois Extension is Aug. 1. I am grateful for all the wonderful experiences, teaching opportunities, and wonderful people I have met over the last six years. It will be greatly missed, but I am also looking forward to see what the future holds. Onwards.

So dear readers, thank you for following along with me over the years and I hope that you will always desire to be lifelong learners. Happy gardening.

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