Literature Jefferson’s Garden Book Celebrates 250 Years Over 250 years ago on March 30, 1766, Thomas Jefferson first began a gardening journal that would contain 50 years of detailed observation, success and failure. The volume has records of his Monticello and Shadwell gardens spanning the years 1766 to 1824. The entries for the first three years, 1766–1768, mainly refer to Shadwell—the home Jefferson inherited from his parents—while the entries from 1769–1824 refer to Monticello—the sprawling home that became Jefferson’s primary residence after Shadwell burned down in 1770. In the Garden book, notations on the vegetables, fruits, flowers and trees planted can be found, as well as harvest dates, planting locations and weather conditions at that time. Jefferson viewed his garden as a laboratory of sorts and often employed new horticultural techniques. In 1770, crops were grown on an incline; and by 1806, terracing was employed. The year 1812 saw the height of gardening productivity. Through his observations and with the help of the detailed journal, Jefferson was able to grow well into the winter months and create a micro-climate for more difficult-to-grow vegetables. Portrait of Thomas Jefferson Courtesy of Monticello.
Bringing Beauty to Life Local resident, Judy Schenk is a woman of many hats. Farmer, mother, wife, co-founder and, most recently, author, Schenk has been living the life of an American woman. Her experiences, as well as her personal mandate to always “bring beauty to life,” inspired her to publish her first poetry collection, in.tu.it: The Poems of an American Woman. Spanning several years and locations, Schenk’s poetry explores womanhood, family and love in America as well as the fear of loneliness. She describes an American landscape and life that any woman can claim as her own. She believes that the American woman balances more than should be expected of her in a world that, “groans for the grace and grit she offers.” The collection also features stunning photographs by Brittany Schenk Anderson, photojournalist and Schenk’s daughter. The beautiful book design can be attributed to The Farmhouse at Veritas Artist in Residence, Stephen Stonestreet.
Published on Nov 11, 2016