Steph Merkle is the Digital Content & Community Director for Countrysde. She tends to her raised bed gardens, raises a mixed flock of egg layers, and keeps honey bees on her four acres in southeastern Wisconsin. As a Colorado native, Steph spent her childhood in the remote San Luis Valley, the largest agricultural alpine valley in the United States. Growing up in the valley made Steph appreciate the scarcity of water in a semi-arid climate and the mounting demands on this limited resource. Steph spent her summers working as a landscaper focused on xeriscaping practices as well as lending a hand on her grandparents’ tree nursery. Steph enjoys traveling as far and wide as her pocketbook allows and spending time with her husband and two young children.