Garden Gnome Group
Elvetham Heath Primary School are fortunate to have eight raised beds on our playground that have been used regularly since they were installed. This year some volunteers started up the 'Garden Gnome Group'.
A select group of enthusiastic children from Years 1-5 have participated in weekly gardening activities such as soil preparation, composting, planting, seeding, weeding, watering and harvesting. Throughout the school year a variety of crops and flowers have been grown and the children have enjoyed taking part in the life cycle of vegetables and fruits.
Furthermore, the school is striving to reduce and recycle, so lots of different compost bins have been placed around the school property. The Garden Group took the initiative to set up two wormeries and are working on creating the perfect compost environment in the remaining composts.
The hopes are that next year the raised beds will thrive with all the school compost being produced this year.
A garden diary is being kept and is available in the library for all the other pupils to read. Please read some of the extracts below:
April: We put soil in the bed and cracked the rocks and got the weeds out and we raked the soil. We planted the tomato plants and then planted the basil seeds in a seed tray. Then we watered the plants. We put bamboo stakes by the plants. We tied them on with plant ties. Then we went to feed the worms compost and we saw an enormous slug.
June: There are flowers on the tomato plants.
April: First we pulled out the weeds. Then we chopped the runners. After that we dug up the strawberry plants. Then we put ridges in the soil. The ridges were like a long black mountain. Then we made holes and planted the strawberries. Then we watered them.
May: We saw tiny white flowers on the strawberries.
June: We put on the netting. Then we looked at the strawberries. There weren’t many, most had been nibbled. But two of them were not mouldy and nibbled. Then we washed the strawberries and ate them and they tasted delicious.
This term we weeded the bed and put the weeds in a pot. We got out grubs and we put the grubs in a bucket. Mrs. Harvey put the grubs on the concrete and fed the birds. We killed a wasp and buried it. We planted some peas, cucumbers and radishes. We made holes and planted the radishes with seed and we planted the peas and cucumbers when they had already grown a bit. We put up a net and wrapped the peas around it so they do not fall over. We have seen that some peas and radishes have grown and we have picked some radishes.
We fed the worms some leaves and compost which has banana peel, apple or orange peel. We had to clear out the compost because some children had been using it as a rubbish bin. First we had to put gloves on. We had to pick all the rubbish out of the compost bin and put it in the rubbish bin.
Here are some photos of our grounds.
We all appreciate how lucky we are to have such beautiful buildings and grounds, and everyone likes to help to keep them looking good.
The ducks like our pond too!
Some of the children have been planting seeds. They are clearly flourishing and the children are looking forward to enjoying the fruits (and vegetables!) of their labours.