Spring is here and the District’s 93 school garden communities are getting their hands dirty by raising beds, planting seeds, and laying the foundation for a successful growing season. Two schools: Tyler Elementary School and Tree of Life Community Public Charter School, have been especially busy over the past two weeks building new gardens.
Both schools were recently awarded OSSE School Garden Grants to build and maintain a healthy school gardens that serve as an educational resource to students. Tyler Elementary enjoyed the sun while raising an astonishing eight beds, while Tree of Life PCS battled the elements to plant a variety of healthy food options for their students.
Tyler Elementary School
“Yesterday turned out to be officially the most beautiful weather of 2014, and thus proved to be the perfect day to start building our garden,” remarked Ibti Vincent, Tyler Elementary school garden coordinator, on their inaugural garden build on April 6. School staff, families of students, and community volunteers all came together to build eight raised garden beds for the FoodPrints Garden at Tyler Elementary. Together, they transplanted daffodils and herbs, dug up and shook the soil from the tenacious sod within the raised bed footprints, assembled and leveled the pine beds, and basked in the beautiful sunshine, laughing and getting to know each other all the while.Vincent continued, “I can’t wait for our upcoming build days, when we’ll fill and plant our beds, and maybe, if we can get an outdoor spigot installed, put in a drip irrigation system. I am keeping my fingers crossed for similarly gorgeous weather in the weeks to come!”
Tree of Life Community Public Charter School
Despite persistent rain showers that fell on Saturday, March 29, Tree of Life Community PCS was not deterred from moving forward with the school’s first school garden build day. Commandeering a portion of their Village Center, students and staff proceeded to construct four raised beds encompassing phase one of the school’s garden. Under the guidance of School Garden Coordinator,Kaifa Anderson-Hall, students worked excitedly throughout the week filling the beds and planting them with traditional spring fruits and vegetables: carrots, radishes, beets, lettuce, spinach, strawberries and even peas. Tree of Life PCS is looking forward to growing a robust school garden program for all of its school community.
School Garden Program (SGP)
These amazing school garden builds were supported through funding from the School Garden Program’s yearly grant. Visit their page on the OSSE website for more information on the School Garden Program, including the School Garden Grant.