"Growing Local Resilience"
The following is an update and request for help from Sylvia Cooper, community-garden worker extraordinaire...
Can you help? The Mt. Erie School garden could use:
- Washing benches that can stand next to the spigots so students can wash vegetables
- Seating so students can sit down in the garden and write in their journals. Any ideas, or carpenters looking for projects? See bottom of this message for who to contact)
- This week we'll post a "Mt. Erie CARES in the Garden" poster on the shed that defines garden behaviors that demonstrate the Cooperation, Attitude, Respect, Effort, and Safety that Mt. Erie students strive to bring to the garden & all they do.
- 2nd and 3rd-grade students are in the garden now for their science classes. That is 150 kids per week! Jody Dylan, the new science teacher, has really embraced the opportunity for students to learn in the garden.
- Students are running a trial between snap pea varieties to see which crop produces best in the garden. Pea shoots are up and measured at 1 cm today! Students have learned to use soil thermometers and do soil tests to determine best conditions for each crop. They make weekly entries in their garden journals.
- WSU research grad student Kelly Ann Atterberry, who is working under Dr. Carol Miles, will present the value of dried bean nutrition and cultivation to 4th-grade science students. They will grow several varieties of dried beans. It will be a fun fall harvest for students returning as 5th-graders.
- 5th-grade science students will do a hot compost to finish as they study soil ecology/ food webs, as well as vermicompost. They'll spread important compost & as 6th-graders and will be lead with compost. We hope this will create a sustainable compost system for Mt. Erie garden. Skagit County Public Works and volunteers will support Jody's curriculum.
- Under the guidance of Nate Rozema, 6th-graders have turned over cover crop in student beds. It's decomposing to support the crops that will be planted for the fall soup.
- The students would like to plant a "school foodbank" bed next to the community foodbank bed. Kids have been eating kale, chives and parsley that wintered over in a bed and are begging for more! We'd love to have plenty to share with families. It will bring a wonderful awareness to the possibilities in our Community Gardens.