Years ago, Karin Fields was dismayed by the poor quality of vegetables in Florida supermarkets and completely sympathizes with kids who call vegetables yucky. Many vegetables are yucky. So she learned to grown her own. In South Florida, with its poor soil and wilting heat, this is no easy task. She spent years reading, watching gardening shows, taking classes and talking to other gardeners. She also learned by trial and error.
Now she is on a mission to teach others how to grow organic food in South Florida. Locally grown food is important, she believes, because by the time food is harvested in California--or Guatemala--shipped to Florida, stored in warehouses, and finally eaten by you, it may have lost more than half of its nutritional value. Locally grown food is more nutritious. Even better is the food you harvest yourself from your own garden right before eating it.
As someone who has attended at least half a dozen of her classes, this blogger can tell you that Karin Fields is a master teacher. She is an expert in her subject and clearly communicates the essentials in a low-key, friendly way. She is a joy to listen to.
You have two opportunities to listen to her teach:
- This Sunday, February 23 between 2 and 3 PM, she will be teaching at the Mandel Public Library on 411 Clematis Street, West Palm Beach, Florida. Pre-registration is required so call ahead at 561-868-7701. At the end of each class, attendees will receive some supplies and an autographed copy of her book, Organic Vegetable Gardening in the Tropics. A flyer has been uploaded to this site that has the information.
- On March 15, she will be speaking at the Early Childhood Expo at the Broward Convention Center. The topic: The importance of including edible gardening in the school curriculum. As someone who has watched her teach kids, I can tell you that gardening increases the children's interest in eating vegetables. Working outdoors with plants also seems to have a calming effect on them.
Either event will provide you with a chance to learn about organic gardening from a wonderful teacher.