On your mark, get set, dig

The school veggie garden that I’ve been working on with other parents and teachers at my kids’ school is finally getting started. Yesterday was the first time we put shovel into soil to dig up the hard-packed dirt and amend it with compost. It was kind of thrilling after all the talk and meetings, writing grant proposals and worrying about soil testing.

In fact, the whole process has been exciting and confusing in equal measure. How should we make decisions? When should we meet—in the morning before work or after school? How do we get the kids to not step on the plants? Where are the dog walkers going to put the poop in the summer? How do we get the children involved? What will happen with watering over the summer?

One of the best parts, to me, is how much the teachers have embraced the garden. Kids in each of the classrooms have planted seeds and are growing them in their windows. My littlest son told me he choose a cucumber seed and was delighted to report that it’s already sprouted! Some of the school’s very creative teachers are creating a collage of the garden map to put up in the front hall during our Last Frost fundraiser next week. There are curriculum ideas being circulated and lots of plans for the future.

We also just got word that the school received a small school garden grant that will make this first stage that much more doable. There’s still a lot of digging and planting and planning and organizing to do, but the garden is a go. Woohoo!


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