Monday, May 18, 2009

Breaking New Ground with E.L. Haynes

This past Wednesday we went outside with our E.L. Haynes 5th grade class and Mr. Franz to finally mark our territory at the new North Columbia Heights Greenspace. This space has been acquired by Washington Parks and People and is planned to be a community space with gardens, seating, and artwork. We have been working with the super-awesome 5th graders in their classrooms to plan out square-foot gardens, grow baby vegetable and herb seedlings, play with worms and distinguish the different bugs by playing BUGGO. Also, the kids created their own signs to invite, inform and inspire visitors to the garden. So far in the garden we have only marked the periphery of the space, but this week we plan to get those seedlings in the ground, aka Grow Bags! These pictures show the space (recently used as a parking lot/ dog pooping yard), kids placing the signs and stakes into the ground, and a lovely post-hard-work stinky armpit/muscle pic. More pics to be posted soon!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Oh yeah - the tasty part!

Since I can only post 5 pics per post, here's the rest of the story of the radishes....after the kids packaged up some bouquets for their families, we decided to munch on the leftovers. By the way, that's italian dressing we are eating with the radishes.

Ravishing Radishes

It's not rocket science to plant radishes, but no other plant gives kids the quickest "I grew it myself!" satisfaction of planting, maintaining and harvesting. Here are some pics of our successful harvest day last week - 200 radishes, and that wasn't even half of what was there!

It's a spring thing.

Now that it's spring again, we have noticed more dirt under our fingernails, more obsessive-compulsive weather forecast checking, and more thoughts flooding our heads about the possibilities of juicy, fresh veggies and fruits. The consistent (and necessary! we will appreciate it in the summer!) rain has been like a big "slow down" sign for us and the kids, eager to be outside all of the time. However, we have managed to squeeze outside a few times in between raindrops! Five volunteer days went by with only one rain date and each garden was given a face lift for the season. Radishes were planted in most spots, and we managed to harvest enough for a farmer's market at Girard. We have become the proud owners of a red wiggler worm bin at DC Bilingual, which has given us hours of fascination and creepy-crawlies. Happily we took on a new class of kids at E.L. Haynes Public Charter School, and we are crossing our fingers to break ground at their new location this week! We will add pictures of the groundbreaking - in the meantime enjoy some of the spring snapshots above!