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Gardening Is A 'Silver Lining' For Many Weary Of The Coronavirus Pandemic

With more time on his hands due to the pandemic, Robert Jones got serious about gardening this year.
With more time on his hands due to the pandemic, Robert Jones got serious about gardening this year.

In the midst of what has otherwise been a heavy, unrelenting year, many Midwesterners have found solace in the dirt.

 

Robert Jones' front yard, where he's attempting to grow pumpkins in time for Halloween.
Credit Dana Cronin
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Robert Jones' front yard, where he's attempting to grow pumpkins in time for Halloween.

So-called “COVID gardens” have popped up all over the country since the beginning of the pandemic with more people working from home and becoming self-reliant in the wake of food supply disruptions.

Robert Jones loves frogs, and wanted to add some flare to his garden.
Credit Dana Cronin
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Robert Jones loves frogs, and wanted to add some flare to his garden.

“I can tell you right now, if the pandemic wouldn’t have happened, the garden would not be as big as it is now, because I wouldn’t have had enough time to plant that stuff and take care of it,” says Robert Jones, an Illinois resident who got serious about gardening this year. 

Robert Jones has had success growing corn for the first time.
Credit Dana Cronin/Harvest Public Media
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Robert Jones has had success growing corn for the first time.

COVID gardens harken back to “victory gardens” from the World War II era, when governments encouraged people to plant gardens to supplement the food supply and boost morale.

 

Andrea Bouck says gardening has been a "silver lining" for her throughout the pandemic.
Credit Dana Cronin
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Andrea Bouck says gardening has been a "silver lining" for her throughout the pandemic.

Andrea Bouck also lives in Illinois and says gardening has helped take her mind off of the pandemic.

 

Although it wasn't an entirely successful season, Bouck says she did manage to grow cucumbers (remains pictured here), rhubarb and tomatoes.
Credit Dana Cronin
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Although it wasn't an entirely successful season, Bouck says she did manage to grow cucumbers (remains pictured here), rhubarb and tomatoes.

“If there’s any silver linings that you can draw from a national and worldwide tragedy, I think that one is what it is for me,” she says.

She's already harvest most things, but Bouck's squash plant is still going strong.
Credit Dana Cronin
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She's already harvest most things, but Bouck's squash plant is still going strong.

Melissa Merli is no stranger to gardening, but had much more time to dedicate to it this year. "It's meditative and relaxing," she says.
Credit Dana Cronin
/
Melissa Merli is no stranger to gardening, but had much more time to dedicate to it this year. "It's meditative and relaxing," she says.

“If there’s any silver linings that you can draw from a national and worldwide tragedy, I think that one is what it is for me,” she says.

Follow Dana on Twitter: @DanaHCronin

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