Brooke Wiland, Millennial Urban Gardener in Texas
Occupation: Client Partner for Social Solutions Tech, homemaker, diagnosed celiac gluten-free cooking enthusiast, urban gardener, and writer
Residence: Austin, Texas
Background: As a kid who hated being outside because “bugs are gross”, Brooke had never taken herself as someone who would love gardening. But as the years passed, she learned to love nature in all of its buggy glory. Brooke took an interest in cooking at a young age and learned from her mom who is a passionate healthy home cook, her dad who made his living managing upscale restaurants, and her grandparents who owned a successful catering company with her parents. All in all, Brooke was surrounded by passionate cooking her whole life.
Her first memory of gardening was one summer in Ohio when her family decided to build a small garden and grow far too many zucchini plants. After that, it would take many years for her to expand her planting past patio plants. She somehow ended up only 4 miles away from downtown Austin, working at a tech company amongst the skyscrapers and operating her life in a 700-square-foot apartment. However, with the small space, she has still stuck to her homemaker principles. She saves vegetable scraps to make stocks, she makes homemade apple cider vinegar and gluten-free bread, and she grows a high volume of produce in her 10-by-20-foot community garden plot.
As a true millennial, her motivation to find her community garden came from Netflix. After seeing an episode of Chef’s Table featuring Chef Dan Barber and then another episode of The Chef Show featuring John Favreau and Chef Roy Choi at the Skywalker Ranch, she was convinced. To level up her cooking, she had to level up and start growing tasty food. Now her motivations are growing organic produce that will fuel her desire for delicious recipes as well as provide nutrition for her family. She loves to motivate other hesitant young gardeners to start their journey of self-sustainability.
Connect with Brooke on Instagram.
Read all of Brooke’s MOTHER EARTH NEWS posts here.
Photo by Cameron J. Taylor