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Beyond the soil into the soul

Black Hills Backstory: Cathie Draine, Master Gardener
Published: Sep. 16, 2020 at 9:12 AM MDT
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KEVN) -Most recently featured in Good Morning Black Hills gardening segment “Let It Grow”, Cathie Draine is a Master Gardener who has traveled the world cultivating and at times experimenting on all things tillage and floriculture.

“As a youngster, I was very ill with rheumatic fever in the last century. And as I was recovering in the spring the Doctor said to my mother ‘it would be good for Cathie to be outside, maybe have a little garden.’ As the summer ended I became aware of the magic of the moment having to do with putting a seed into the ground. From that point on, I was addicted. I thought this is something I also have to be a part of.” said Draine.

Her gardening experiences have even reached as far as Africa.

“To Lagos, Nigeria, in 19-71 after the Biafran War, times were tough. I would spend all day in the various markets trying to find food for the next two days. It taught me that there was no advantage of being hungry. So when the other oil wives in our 6-plex apartment building were ordering carpets for their houses I ordered a truck of dirt,” Draine said. “Our gardener Easa and I built a garden in the backyard. I was no longer the laughing stock of the oil-wives because I had a garden that would grow. It was a fond memory filled with things that I learned about and now that I know a little bit more about what was happening in the compost pile I’m even more committed to teaching people how to do this.”

Draine connects to the garden in a philosophical way but her true vocation can be found in living life.

“I have always associated being in the garden with sunshine, being in the presence of vigorous life, being outdoors, being as close as I can to the earth functioning season. I love the flowers and I get excited about them but at the core of everything is oh good I’ve waked up, I’m still alive, I’m going get up and go out into the garden,” Draine said.

And when it comes down to how Cathie would like to be remembered?

“She was happy in her garden”.

Copyright 2020 KEVN. All rights reserved.

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