Ken Howard (UTSC Professor)
" For 40+ years, the valley and my garden, have provided a refuge where I manage to escape the daily grind and the pressures of work. It’s a place where life slows to a crawl and everyone …...fellow gardeners, the UTSC ground staff, community neighbours out exercising or walking their dogs ……. readily find time for a friendly smile and a wave and are always happy to share a story or two. It’s a place where everyone goes out of their way to help each other. It’s a place for sharing. The gardening is fun, but that’s really quite secondary. It’s the people you meet that makes the place so special to me."
Karina Howard (UTSC Alumnus)
"Much of the vegetables we grow I donate, not only to friends, family and neighbours, but I "target" all the seniors in my life. For the latter I make ready meals by the batch; it is one of the main reasons why I would dread not having the garden. The garden gives me the excuse that I have lots of food I need help to 'use up'."
Junyee Wang (Community Member)
"Growing your own food is the solution to the many challenges we face from climate change, modern/digital lives, health epidemics and disconnection between each other and nature.  I've had the pleasure to meet and learn from seasoned gardeners and experiment with multiple methods and crops.  We were able to grow carrots, strawberries, blackberries, gogi, sunchokes, tomatoes, kale, squash, asparagus, greens and garlic... even milkweed and fennel for the butterflies."
Jason Weir (UTSC Professor)
"In modern society we have specialized in our own career niches. This specializiation tends to disconnect us from the basics of life around us that we depend on. This couldn't be more true of food production. We buy our food in grocery stores, often taking it for granted that produce is readily available. Working the soil at the UTSC community gardens provides me with a meaningful sense of connection to the earth and its bounty. Growing my own food has been truly empowering and has endowed me with a deep respect for our farmers and the true value of wholesome food."
Andrew Patenall (retired UTSC Professor) and Leslie Patenall (Community Member)
"I take surplus Kale and cabbage to the Toronto Animal Services shelter on Progress Avenue.  The rabbits can smell me coming and go nuts. Leslie thinks that this shows social responsibility and a touching inclusion of rabbits in our environmental outreach.  Yeah!  I am very fond of rabbits, especially when slow braised with carrots and onions." --Andrew
Laura Min-Gyun Weir (Community Member)
"Importing food from across the globe is contributing to our global climate change crises. Gardening at UTSC allows me to source a substantial proportion of our food locally, thus reducing carbon emissions. By gardening, I feel I am doing my part."
Monirul Mizra (UTSC Professor)
"For my family and I, the UTSC community garden is very important. I began gardening here in 2009. I often plant a mixture of Canadian varieties and vegetables from my culture. What is more valuable than fresh vegetables from the garden? My activities in the garden from late fall to early spring help me stay mentally and physically fresh. Gardening at UTSC has provided my family and I with wonderful memories over the past 14 years, as well as new opportunities for friendship and teamwork."
Jeff and Bernadette Brown (Community Members)
"Having a nearby destination I can cycle to and from and get a physical workout while I'm there is important to me rather than going to the much more distant Pan Am gym and having to take the car. I really enjoy the interactions with the birds that visit our valley garden area and my own plot has hosted nesting cardinals and catbirds in my climbing bean poles and bramble bushes every spring. Sometimes it's hard getting things done there then as the birds are fierce defenders of territory, but we always manage to co-exist and raise new generations of our feathered friends." --Jeff
John and Aurora Baltus (Community Members)
"In addition to providing me and my family with lots of healthy produce in our old age, I like to take the surplus to the local Seven Oaks Seniors home where they appreciate the bounty." --John
Anton Passchier (Community Member)
"For over 10 years I have had the opportunity to garden in the UTSC Community Garden which I have enjoyed very much. Having shared many memories with fellow gardeners, watching and experiencing every year with anticipation to a new growing season. This garden has assisted as a way to release stress, enjoy the outdoors, and provide a balance in our daily activities." 

What the UTSC gardens mean to me...

All photos and video are copyright protected by UTSC Garden Club members and may not be used without the owner's permission. These photos are all of our own gardens. No stock photos were used in this website. Website created by Jason Weir