Bristol & Kinsley ~ South Carolina

Working in their backyard garden has provided many fun moments this year for the Morris sisters of Goose Creek, South Carolina. Their mom, Jackie, found out about Katie’s Krops through Facebook. The family volunteered in the group’s flagship garden in Summerville, South Carolina, in 2020, where they enjoyed helping nurture and harvest vegetable crops.

Nine-year-old 4th grader Bristol and eight-year-old 2nd grader Kinsley have many things in common, including attending Devon Forest Elementary School and being on the autism spectrum. So their parents thought that growing a garden at their home would be a good thing to do since it allows them to work on their own and to do those tasks they love the most, such as getting dirty and playing in the mud. Mixing dirt, fertilizer, and peat moss was not a chore for this team; they loved doing it!

Their mom has been their primary gardening instructor. She taught them to plant seeds, one of Bristol’s favorite tasks, water with a hose, weed, and harvest when the crops are ripe. The primary beneficiary of their efforts has been retired elderly neighbors who no longer drive and are dependent on others, including their family members, to take them to the store. They were very grateful to receive cabbage, kale, tomatoes, bell peppers, and, soon to come, watermelon once they ripen.

There would have been more to share if not for a couple of problems. It turns out that the squirrels liked the seeds and ate them. Once the garden was replanted and started growing, rain flooded their raised beds not once but twice, and they had to be replanted again. It was at this point that Kinsley cried and who could blame her. The rain also affected the cucumbers, which didn’t produce because of the flooding.

Kinsley didn’t mind the vegetables not growing for her own sake because she doesn’t like eating them and prefers apples; she was just disappointed that there would be less to share since she likes giving them away. On the other hand, Bristol loves vegetables and has been known to eat fresh-picked beans straight from the vines. However, she lists flowers, including sunflowers, as her favorite thing to grow.