The ICS St. Francis Garden club worked really hard last Friday. They pulled weeds in the upper part of the ICS garden, turned the soil to loosen it for new plants, mixed in compost to add nutrients to the soil, formed the rows with levels for walking in between the raised levels for planting, added newspaper and mulch to the rows to stop the growth of weeds and to mark where students can walk.
The students also harvested the carrots growing in the garden and fertilized the tomatoes.
Each student will be assigned a row to plan, to plant and to keep up this spring.
We thank the Town N Country Garden Circle women for their help with the club and with the butterfly garden again this week.
To stop the growth of weeds, the grade 2 students with the help of the Town N Country Garden Circle ladies, put down layers of newspapers with mulch on top to prevent the growth of weeds. After school, the St. Francis Garden Club finished the paper/mulch layer on the lower level of the garden.
Incarnation has had two wonderful women, Lesley Allen and Lois McLane, from the Town N Country Garden Circle volunteer to help us with our garden. Our garden was neglected during the Christmas vacation and badly needed weeding. We decided that was where they would start to help us. We also had an eager group of garden workers waiting to work in the grade 2 classroom.
We put on our garden gloves and went to work. It took an hour, but under the guidance of Ms. Allen and Ms. McLane, the students completed the task of weeding the lower level of the garden. They also got to watch Mr. Arnold unload 20 bags of mulch to be used to cover sections of the garden so the weeds do not come back. Students were asked to bring in newspapers from home to help control the weeds in the garden. Newspaper is placed down first and the mulch spread on top of it. This forms a barrier so the weeds do not get sunlight and are unable to grow.
The lower half of the garden will become the butterfly garden. Ms. Allen and Ms. McLane brought some plants to start this section of the garden. They also brought cuttings of other plants. These were left in the grade 2 classroom for the students to keep watered and so the students could watch the roots grow. The grade 2 students will plant them in the garden in a few weeks.
The students contributed banana peels and apple cores to the compost pile and watched in amazement as Ms. Allen dumped a large bag of coffee grounds into the compost bin. She regularly collects coffee grounds from local coffee shops. It makes a fertile addition to the compost pile.
We would like to thank them for their help and look forward to the development of the butterfly garden this spring.
Our student garden club usually meets on Friday after school. Last week, students approached me to see if we could work in the garden after school on Wednesday since there was no school on Friday. There is always weeding to do, so that is what we did. Without the students help, we would have gone two weeks without weeding. With all the rain that we have had, the fast growing weeds would have crowded our vegetables and flowers robbing them of needed water and nutrients, so their volunteer work in the garden was beneficial to our developing garden plants.
This week after discussing composting and checking the temperature in the compost pile, we began work on the garden. An amazing amount of weeds had appeared since our last garden meeting, so the first task was to weed. Then the rows were prepared and seeds planted. Students were assigned rows so there was shared responsibility for tasks. Students read the seed packages to learn how deep to plant the seeds and how far apart. Each row was labeled with the type of seed and the date.