Kendall Rae Johnson is 6 years old, Atlanta-born and being raised with New Orleans roots. Kendall has been playing in the dirt since 2019, inspired by the teachings of her great grandmother, Laura "Kate" Williams, who was terminally ill with cancer when Kendall was born. During the first two years of her life, Kendall would cling to her great grandmother’s side and watch both great grandma Kate and daddy “Q” cook with good smells throughout their house. Her great grand would always say, "Don't throw my collard green stems away. Put it back in the dirt." Little did Kendall’s parents know that what you pick up from a grocery store for dinner can actually help grow another meal. After the passing of Kendall’s great grandma, her parents decided to create a patio garden in honor of their dearly beloved. They put collard stems back into the soil and it was the first thing they watched grow. Kendall had been bit by the gardening bug at age 3.
At the truly curious age of 4, Kendall’s parents built her a larger outdoor garden bed around the perimeter of their property. She had a passion for growing and picked out what she wanted to grow. Kendall and her dad started to outline where they wanted to plant their plants. In the meantime, as flowers and fruits started to bud and bloom, Kendall’s friends were fascinated by the growth, and when the crop was ready, everyone had their toy shopping cart ready to pick. She would explain to her friends about the types of plants.
Kendall became the youngest certified farmer in the State of Georgia. She’s the youngest African American 6-year-old with a business formation at both the state and federal level and has obtained her Farm and Tract ID. Kendall was able to create a safe space where kids can come and learn about the great adventure of being in nature and growing their own foods. She hosts an outdoor kids’ gardening club and marketplace. She intends to connect with local restaurants and juice bars, attend more speaking engagements to share about why she loves her garden, and become an influencer for all kids wanting to do what she does. She will be a part of the next generation who will thrive in this billion-dollar industry, with her family rooting her on.
Kendall has received an exceptional amount of love, leading her to meet House Representative Mandisha Thomas of the 65th District, obtaining $85,000 in state funds to create the young farmer programs in the City of South Fulton for K-12 students. Kendall was afforded the opportunity to meet council members and commissioners and state her position as a young farmer.
She currently is in the process of fundraising to build high tunnels for her garden to continue harvesting her crop (carrots) during the fall and winter months without interruptions or losses. She would love to continue her gardening club activities in a grow house. Kendall hopes to see you in the family’s garden one day soon!
To support this young entrepreneur who will change the way kids look at food and food insecurity, please visit https://gofund.me/d3cb1bd5.