ANDERSON — Sunshine, rainwater, soil and trust are making things grow at a small, but productive urban farm in Anderson.
Rick and Karen Hersberger are the souls tending the lush Fourth Street garden. They find themselves there after a leap that’s all about faith.
The Hersbergers’ garden is only about a tenth of an acre, measuring about 160 feet by 50 feet, but tended with loads of loving care, it’s producing plenty. It is all organically grown, free of pesticides and chemicals.
Right now the garden is loaded up with vegetables like tomatoes, squash, cucumbers, peas, green beans, eggplant and plenty more. Flowers are planted as well to help draw the bees for pollination.
“We’ve always got something coming,” said Rick. He and Karen take their produce to market on Saturdays at the Markleville Farmers Market and the Anderson City Market.
“We try to sell our vegetables to where people who don’t have a great income can have fresh food,” said Rick. “It’s gone really well. People really like it. You don’t make any money. It’s just the gratification of you helping people.” He says money made from the markets just helps to cover costs.
Other produce from the garden is then happily given away to neighbors, or to The Christian Center. Rick hopes to give away even more. His idea is a 4 Corners ministry, based on the Bible’s concept of reserving the harvest at the four corners of the field for the poor.
It’s that desire to reach out and touch others’ lives that landed the Hersbergers on Anderson’s west side last November.
The couple lived out in the country all of their lives. They enjoyed the quiet of the country life on 9 acres. In 2007, they even built a brand new house to be their retirement home, providing input to the design so that it would be just right. In 2012, however, they sold it to move to Anderson, driven by a calling from God.