Growing Strong at Venable!

Posted by on May 5, 2015 | Comments Off on Growing Strong at Venable!

Growing Strong at Venable!

Things are really hoppin’ in the garden at Venable Elementary! With nearly every classroom involved in the garden this spring, Garden Coordinator, Jennifer Esser, joyously has her hands full with seeds being planted and potted up or transplanted in classrooms all over the school, classes coming out to work and learn in the garden, and a whole slew of other exciting things going on!

According to Jennifer, the goal at Venable this spring was to get as many students and teachers involved in the garden as possible – and, boy, has that sure happened! In order to do this, Jennifer started by helping students in five classrooms plant seedlings under grow lights to care for with their classes. Students sowed and cared for over 400 snapdragon, pansy, viola, sweet pea, and California poppy seedlings. When it came time to transplant the seedlings after spring break, in addition to planting the flowers all around the Venable garden, each child was also able to pot up a flower to bring home with them.

Fourth graders planting Pansy Got the Blues that they grew from seed.

Fourth graders planting Pansy Got the Blues that they grew from seed.

It seems that the garden is just bustling with activity this spring – first graders recently sowed three flats of arugula, kale, swiss chard, and spinach, which will soon be transplanted into a shady corner of the garden.

The school librarian is working with all seven Pre-K and Kindergarten classes in sowing and caring for dwarf sunflowers & marigolds.

Plants to bring home!

Plants to bring home!

In addition to all of the many things happening during the school day at Venable, Jennifer has been busy helping to facilitate many other clubs and events involving the garden outside of school hours!

Venable's after school garden club!

Venable’s after school garden club!

Throughout the spring, the after school garden club at Venable has had fun planting cilantro, parsley, potatoes, strawberries, radishes, lettuce, and other crops.

Venable’s Spring Fair was a big success, especially in the arts & crafts/garden room, where folks decorated pots and filled them with ‘Blue Fortune Hyssop.’ Says Jennifer, “it was such a popular station that we ran out of pots and plants!”

Spring family garden workday!

Spring family garden workday!

In March, Jennifer also hosted a spring family work day on a rainy Saturday where volunteers (which were numerous considering the weather) helped to add compost donated by Black Bear Composting to all of the garden beds and mulch all of the paths in between the beds.

With all of this coupled with the wonderful C’Ville Parks & Recreation Fun Run that happened at Venable last Saturday – I’d say the garden at Venable is teeming with students, parents, and teachers alike getting excited about all that the garden and spring has to offer!

Garden smiles...

Garden smiles.