While I may not have been able to be present in the garden with everyone, I really still feel like the experience and discussion about plants and just how hard it is to grow them was something I really thought about outside of class.
In mainland America I feel like most of us take for granted the readily available supply of fresh foods and plant based options that we usually are able to find in our grocery stores. Not once do most of us probably think about how what we see now as a common good, was once a seasonal luxury that was vey difficult to produce. In one of my other classes, were discussing the Dustbowl and the Great Depression and how American farm life has changed since that time to become what we know it to be today. Less than 100 years ago we still had issues procuring and growing basic grains and food sources that we rely on so heavily today. Thinking about that and connecting to the lesson in the garden really made me appreciate just how hard farmers have to work to not only produce the food we eat, but also to care for the land in order to be able to grow food on it. Really making me now understand just how much knowledge and time goes into agriculture and why there are even degrees the people get in it.
Connecting this thought to tea and the cute little plants we now have; I never honestly thought about the process of making tea or anything to do with it until this class. I knew nothing about the process, what the plant was like, and definitely not anything about the drying or cultivating process. However, now that I have a vague idea about all of that I actually understand the difference between tea brands like Lipton (yes I am a proud supported even still) and the posh more expensive tea brands. While I may still be found of Lipton and face ridicule from my English family and the tea community for this choice, I do now have a new appreciation for different types and brands of tea and the process in which they are made. In a broader sense I now have a new understanding and appreciation for the different types of teas, and that makes me very excited to get to try and see the difference in these teas.