Menlo Park’s Enchanted Garden Update
Grow Portland is a nonprofit dedicated to growing food in the city and facilitating garden education at partnering schools, including Menlo Park. Support Grow Portland, and the Menlo Park Community Garden at GoFundMe.com
This month Menlo Park is welcoming a new Grow Portland instructor, Gardener Jennie! Jennie has been farming since 2006. She has helped to manage sustainable small-scale farms in a diversity of communities. Her passion for farming and gardening grew as she experienced the growing space as a place where endless learning could take place. The garden has been a venue for garden-based education, science, food cultivation, cultural learning and community development. Recently she has developed a passion for seed saving and seed stories. Exploring the points at which seed and in turn food connect people and place. Growing food with others and especially educating youth about growing food, can truly help to maintain and grow a living food culture. Jennie looks forward to getting the students outside, utilizing the garden as a space to form endless connections to our environment and to maintaining and growing a dynamic food culture!
The focus lesson in January will be the History of Agriculture and pulling beds to prep for seeding.
February will likely be Compost and Worms and starting to prep/ design and seed our garden beds!
Stay tuned for updates and please visit our garden to watch it grow and bloom with your families!
After a successful summer growing season, our school garden was able to donate a large quantity of beans, tomatoes, herbs, cucumbers, corn, greens, potatoes, flowers and more to our school community and through our onsite food bank! Thank you to those classrooms and volunteers who helped throughout the Spring and Summer seasons!
We will be having an after school work party on Dia de los Muertos-Tuesday November 1st at 3:30 to put our garden to rest for the winter! Many hands make light work and we’d love to have yours out there helping to clean up and keep our garden space healthy and productive. Please bring gloves and hand shears if you have them. If you have a jack-o-lantern to donate or a bag of fall leaves, please bring them with you or deposit near the shed at the back of the garden earlier in the day. If you have questions or would like to join our Garden Committee, please contact E_Archodominion@ddsd40.org.
•Spring 2016 – Season Summary•
Many of you came out to help build our school garden back in March. The Menlo Park students have been busy getting their hands dirty and engaging in real world lessons while spending time in our Enchanted Garden. Every grade level has been using their raised bed in a unique way.
The Kindergarteners have planted a Five Senses garden bed filled with herbs and flowers for the entire school to enjoy! They have also made a pizza garden containing basil that they started as seeds indoors, as well as zucchini, tomatoes, peppers and eggplant.
First grade was first to get into the garden with the pea starts they planted out, end of March, followed by bush beans for Earth Day.
Second grade has filled their bed with salad greens and radishes.
Third grade made a Peace Garden, featuring culturally significant foods such as, eggplant, Anaheim peppers, brussels sprouts, tomatillos and more.
Fourth grade has been very active in the garden! All four classes participated in planting potatoes for their pioneer unit. A couple classes also recently helped plant the Three Sisters, corn, beans and squash. They also have a salad greens bed that they hope to enjoy before the year is out.
Several Fifth graders helped by planting a variety of cucumber seeds into their bed with the hope that maybe next year’s students will get to do some pickling!
Our SLPA classes have planted nasturtiums, kale seeds and starts and just added a tomato and peppers. They have plans to paint the exterior of their bed as well.
The SUN Garden Club has planted their own bed as well as contributed by weeding and watering and providing support. They also helped by setting up the bean teepee for the 3rd graders as a fun way to meet a measurement standard, by measuring and graphing bean growth. Tasty things will be produced in our garden all summer. Any available produce will be found in our food pantry on Friday’s from 2-4pm. If you are interested in space to grow your own food in our small community garden, please contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Garden Build Day was a great success!
The Mid-County Memo wrote a feature article which can be viewed HERE.
Visit the Mid-County Memo Facebook page to see the photos!