How does your garden grow? With lantana, snapdragons and Brussels sprouts at Morton Ranch Elementary as students recently planted a garden that may soon grow vegetables for the entire campus to enjoy. In a project led by Kimberly Czubara, science coordinator at Morton Ranch Elementary, students from all grade levels planted herbs and vegetables such as lettuce, broccoli, collard greens, cauliflower, parsley, rosemary and mint to name a few. The garden will serve as an extension to science classrooms for the entire campus, while adding an aesthetic appeal as well. The campus hopes to soon have a fully functional vegetable garden.
Czubara, who has been with the campus since it opened just three years ago, found it challenging to find examples of real plant life around the new campus grounds. This, combined with Principal Elisa Farris’ hope to one day have a real Farmer’s Market, is what first led to the idea of planting a garden for students to nurture from start to finish.
“Every grade level has something to learn about plants, from plant parts and plant systems, the life cycle of plants, the survival of plants in a particular environment and the properties of soil to support plant life,” says Czubara.
Finding a creative way to face this challenge, Czubara reached out to a local Eagle Scout and his troop members to build planting boxes. All in all, 14 boxes measuring 16’x4’ were built alongside the campus. Ka ty Stone and Gravel donated soil for the boxes and Nelson Water Gardens and Lowe’s extended a significant discount to the campus for gardening tools and plants.
A classroom schedule for each grade level has been created for weekly watering duties. Throughout the year, students will weed and harvest the garden, and will plant new vegetation in the spring.
“My hope is to harvest the vegetables and be able to eat them in soups, salads and salsas,” says Czubara.
To view photos of the garden and the planting project, click here.
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