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Wednesday, April 3, 2013

ROOT-ing For Veggies

This morning as we headed to the Peace Patch, a glorious warm breeze carried the smell of fresh plants and dirt our way. Ahh, the smells of spring in the garden. It quickly became clear to us that spring has sprung in a very big way, as the garden is bursting with the emergence of new fruits and vegetables, weighing down stems and hiding under leaves. 

<- Here's just a hint at what's ripening in the garden right now!

Today at Sanderlin, Paul, Kelsey, and I were lucky to have three wonderful groups of willing and able volunteers who were excited to help us ROOT out some vegetables in the garden.  The last of our first batch of radishes were ready to be pulled, and the carrots also needed thinning. Time to make way for the new and uproot the old!

 We found carrots, eggplant, and even sweet potatoes here ^

Here's Kelsey with an assortment of root veggies, and a great group of helpers! ^

My group and I checking on the banana peppers

This boy wrote a Haiku about eggplants for this Thursday's Art Show and Auction! It's from 6-8pm and sure to be a great show.
Sweet potato!
We focused our lesson today on remembering the functions of each part of the plant, and then specifically talking about root vegetables, their nutritional value, the different varieties, and how we can identify them in our own garden!
It was fun getting our hands in the beds to dig up various root-vegetables. And hey, the best learning experiences involve getting 

a little bit dirty, right? When the 
watering system was accidentally turned on, however, we all got a bit of a soaking as well. I think the plants might have been happier for it than we were...

The surprise sunflowers!
We also talked about seed migration, and boy, were there plenty of examples in the garden today! Growing in our Three Sisters bed right now are some pretty gigantic plants that we didn't even plant there this 
season! One third grader brilliantly pointed out that they were sunflowers, and that they must be the product of seeds that fell from past plants in that area. Couldn't have said it better myself! We had fun locating our stray carrot growing in the middle of the garbanzo bean bed as well. Birds, foraging animals, the wind, rain, and even WE are responsible for the spread of seeds. 

Thank you Sanderlin 3rd graders, for helping us harvest so many great radishes, carrots, and sweet potatoes today! 

I can't wait to see the progress that our hearty veggies will make by next week...

Until next time-
Miranda W.

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