In 2009 there was a call from the Sustainable Paremoremo attendees that there should be some fruit trees at the local rural ‘RidgeView School’. ‘Mums of the school’ Emma Williamson and Savannah Carter-Green decided to make it happen and, at the same time have some veggie gardens installed. This started a move towards Arbor Day 2009, which saw construction of three HUGE raised veggie gardens, a 3-bay composting system and over the following two years, thirty fruit trees were planted. This happened with local families in attendance over two very special community events accompanied with demonstrations from experts and support from the local community board. The school children loved it and thoroughly enjoyed bringing in their families to share in these events.
With all of these wonderful additions in place, there was further need to ensure the new resources were properly utilised. Thus began the ‘RidgeView Garden Club’ held on a weekly basis, at lunchtime, for children to join in if they didn’t mind leaving their playtime. An average of ten to thirty students attend the ‘club’ to maintain the fruit trees and gardens, grow yummy veggies and other more specialised gardening activities. The harvest has, at times, been so bountiful that the entire school was able to take home a bunch of veggies, with recipes, to the family dinner table.
Another project saw children growing their own ‘take home’ veggie box, under cloches , from seed, over a six week period. Some are still tending those gardens at their homes to this day.
Whether it’s making hot compost, mulching, planting or watering, each week brings a lot of fun. Learning and solidifying the knowledge that no matter how old you are, you can grow your own fruit n’ veggies! Priceless lessons for students and (being reported back to the Pare Publisher on a monthly basis) the community! Updates