Growing gardens to bloom professionally, a central Ohio woman follows her passion

Pandemic Postcards

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH)–You’ve no doubt heard it said, “You are what you eat.”

Katie Carey doesn’t just say it, she believes it, so she decided to try to live what she believes and help people plant a garden that keeps on feeding them.

“It’s just a way of keeping a plant healthy, just like people sometimes need to prune stuff out of their life too,” Carey said while pruning one of the plants.

Carey, with Columbus Foodscapes, remembers doing that in college — life pruning. She focused on International Relations in college.

“I was able to travel,” she said.

She worked on farms for room and board and learned how to plant community gardens for those who are less fortunate.

“Food is at the center of our lives, if you think about it,” Carey said.

She worked for half a dozen places: Highland Youth garden and Franklinton Farms were two of them.

“I just love growing food so much and I love helping people do that for themselves,” she said.

So Carey took the leap and dug down deep and created Columbus Foodscapes. She was scared then — and is still scared today — about the leap she took.

“I don’t necessarily see it as a coincidence that I felt called to do this at the peak of a pandemic when people were concerned about their health and excited to go outside,” she said.

Columbus Foodscapes can make a garden for you or, like customer Ward Weber, create a DIY plan in the backyard of your home.

The garden, a gift from his wife, has her “pretty stoked” to be growing food in their yard, Weber said.

Onions, greens, melons, eggplant, asparagus, strawberries, broccoli, cauliflower, and tomatoes are some of the produce grown in Weber’s garden.

“I know when I get something, it’s as local as it gets,” he said. “I can walk down to the garden, pluck a tomato, slice it up, and put it on a sandwich.”

Carey calls food medicine, thinking of it as a healing thing for her.

“When the pandemic hit, people started focusing on what was really important to them and what they were really interested in,” she said.

Columbus Foodscapes became her only income. Her “big juicy dream,” she calls it, and hopes to invest the money earned back into community gardens in central Ohio.

“You can let fear ride in the car with you, but you can’t let it drive,” she said of the future of her business endeavor. “I just have to have faith that I’m going to be OK.”

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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