Organic Garden Program

Resulting from expressing interest and making an application, we were very pleased to hear toward the end of 2013 that we had been granted $3,500 in resources to assist with the implementation of an Organic Gardening Program supported by Australian Certified Organic and Kadac Health Foods – www.kadac.com.au.

We started very modestly by using planters donated through the Bunnings Community involvement program and three purchased ourselves.  Last year students from our Junior Learning community enjoyed the produce.  However, the funding through the program will enable all classes to participate in the planting, maintenance and – importantly – eating of produce.  We’ll also learn a lot about recycling, sustainability and general gardening along the way.

With the help of the school community, we were able to turn this ……

…into this!  At this point there was a pause as discussions were held regarding the type and number of planters we’d purchase so that all classes might share the responsibility of raising herbs and vegies.  Those decisions were made, and …..

….Friday, 13th. June was actually a ‘lucky’ day for our program as Sharon and other parents from our school community assisted our Year 6s and Mrs. Hyatt to really kick off the practical side of the program.  Classes had been discussing the theoretical and environmental science side of the program since the start of the year.

We purchased additional planters from Bunnings Warehouse.  Year 6s put them together and, after much discussion, they agreed on how to arrange things.

The next step was to line the interiors with newspaper and bucket in the soil.

As things got under way outside, a group was putting the finishing touches to the last gardens inside.  Rhonda is holding the side as Mark fits the end piece into the groove.

Shovelling and filling and emptying (and repeat quite a number of times)………

At first we didn’t think we were making much of an impression on the large pile of organic soil …..but it began to disappear!

It took the whole morning and some of the afternoon, but all gardens are now filled and ready to go.  We now refer to the Australian Organic Garden Program to consider which vegies, fruits or herbs might be planted in the next fortnight leading into the school holidays.

We are most grateful to all the parents/friends who assisted (Abby, Rita, Rhonda), but we offer special thanks to Sharon (we’ll get a picture of her eventually) who stayed all day to ensure things were right and had earlier explained to the whole school how our new worm farm will be operating.

Once the gardens were set up, classes were involved in plantings.

There was a lot of discussion in the classrooms regarding the types of plants we might put in for our first crops.  Of course, the focus was on what might be readily edible.

The Organic Garden proves to be an excellent co-operative activity for our Buddies Program with our Year 6s and the F/1 class.

All the gardens are now thriving!  Students and Staff have enjoyed a number of snacks using our own produce.  Mini spinach quiches and beetroot dip are our current favourites.  Check out our weekly Newsletters for Organic Veggie News.