Meet Tianna Washington

Posted by on Nov 21, 2018 | Comments Off on Meet Tianna Washington

Meet Tianna Washington

Do you know the impact of growing a garden?

Today it’s easy to feel lost, because the connection between us and nature is being left behind. When we were children, we wanted to be outside, but as adults we forget the importance of tranquility. There is strength in simplicity, as technology evolves our society has forgotten simplicity and our instincts. Although we are more evolved, we are still animals and we have been taken out of our habitat, stress and anxiety is sure to come with that. We are so busy these days we may not even notice that the feelings of being high strung are coming from us missing a huge a part of what we are.

There is a big difference between the how a child thinks and lives versus an adult. There is a clear difference in priorities, maturity and happiness. I remember, unlike my friends who all wanted to grow up fast, I would rather grow young. I could sense the effects of no longer having the innocence we all start off having, it was dreadful. In my life, being an adult just meant work, stress, and distance.

As a student in Buford, it was hard to balance the structure of school and complexity of home life. It was in Buford that I started to “grow up” and felt the stress that would start eat away at my chest. I am an outgoing and cheery person to be around, but the work of trying to catch up in math, which seemed impossible, and trying to stay a good person, strong and useful, the stress began to get to me. As my home life blew up, it was hard to hold onto myself.

When I was first introduced to the garden club, I was just wandering the halls after school. It was after my math tutoring and I was ready to go, but then I saw tomatoes. Rachel (the garden coordinator) had a pile of tomatoes in front of her, and the best part of it was she let me eat one. I started asking about the club, and once I heard about it I remember clearly bragging about how I eat tomatoes raw with salt – a quality I thought would impress the head of the garden club. The next week I went to the garden club.

At the time when I started to go it was just a field with an idea, but it was fun because unlike in school and home, there was freedom. I had never been in such a calm and positive environment before. Everyone who joined the garden club were sure to become friends. The best part was yet to come. I remember that huge piles of dirt and mulch came. Every day for weeks we all got to dig and fill up wheelbarrows. I loved it, and I gained some confidence away from the system that didn’t fit me.


“Wow!” “That’s so cool” “What is that?” “Can I hold it?”

Fast forward to now, and I see the impact on a daily basis working as a CSG Garden Associate. Being that I grew up in Charlottesville and with the Buford garden I love to see the connection that students have developed now. Students now can embrace nature as we all should, and interact with each other in a new environment. Students gain a sense of independence and confidence through the leadership they are given in the garden.

The gardens are now a clear distinction between the hectic pace of school, home and life as a whole. It is the bit of the nature, simplicity and tranquility that we all need and that students and staff can all enjoy.

It has meant a lot to me to grow from being a student at Buford, to a CSG Summer Intern, to being on staff as a CSG Garden Associate.

-Tianna Washington