Breanna Detwiler is a mom with a passion for food, gardening, and the natural world. She grew up gardening on her family’s farm in Virginia, studied environmental science in the US and Ireland, founded a community garden in North Carolina, and managed several garden projects along the way. As the founder of Grow Agrigate, she now works to create growing spaces that are fun and functional for the whole family. We're excited to catch up with Bre and ask her a few questions about her business, and life in Richmond.
What motivated you to start Agrigate?
Gardening has always been fun and rewarding for me. After having kids, I realized what a magical place the backyard garden can be for the whole family. Kids and parents can learn where their food comes from, caretaking, and the natural world. I started Agrigate to show families how to garden effectively and in a joyful way, even with very young kids.
To you, what does success look like for your business?
Success for my business is nurturing a community of families growing food, learning about nature, and practicing good stewardship of our spaces. I chose the name Agrigate thinking about how even small-scale growers collectively could do something big. When you garden organically at home, in tune with nature, you’re taking care of your little corner of the world. When you garden with kids, you’re also giving them an awareness of how our little corners can make up a community, especially when we do things like share our abundance. Hopefully that builds to how we take care of each other and our planet.
What's your favorite spot in Richmond for family hang?
We love the river! We’re so lucky to have the James River and its park system for hiking, birding, and rock jumping. On a sunny day, if we’re not in the garden, we’re in the woods. We especially love Pony Pasture. The kids can explore the rocks and pools for hours.
What's an ideal way to introduce little ones to gardening?
Start small, like them! Little ones can be happy with just some dirt to play in alongside you while you garden a larger patch. If you want to take it one step further you might try the following:
1. Mark off a small dedicated space just for them. Give them a set of gloves (pure magic for kids) and a few toy trucks or small spades to help with the digging.
2. Help them plant just one or two kinds of seeds. I recommend radishes or lettuce because they grow quickly. Don’t worry if they plant them too close together, you can thin them later.
3. Show them how to water and care for their patch. Their curiosity and joy will grow alongside their plants, I guarantee it!
Fill in the blank - I would love to see more ________ in Richmond.
I would love to see more vegetable gardens in Richmond!
Want to get to know Be a little better? We're hosting two in store workshops with Grow Agrigate on Sunday March 3rd and March 17th. We hope you can join us!