Saturday, April 21, 2012

From Smoothies to Seeds

Our last two Green LIONS Garden Group meetings have been action packed. At our meeting in late March we made smoothies with the last of our garden Swiss chard blended with frozen organic strawberries, frozen organic bananas, organic local apple juice and pineapple juice. The cups (biodegradable of course) were emptied and seconds were requested by many.

Adding mild raw greens to fruit smoothies is a wonderful and delicious way to sneak an extra vitamin boost into our diets. We are in the season of green right now! Local markets, like Stoneys and Heritage Natural Market, and especially the local farms are loaded up with greens of all types to eat raw or cooked. It is easy to load up on these greens while they’re in season now, lightly cook them and freeze them for later when they aren’t as available.

Students also made anemometers to take home to measure and track changes in wind and to measure wind velocity. We found the template and instructions through Action Pack magazine, an e-zine filled with wonderful crafts and activities for kids, . They were able to measure wind velocity through a few easy steps. First the revolutions per minute (RPM) were calculated by using a timer to count how many times a marked cup passes in one minute. Next, the circumference of the circle made by the rotating paper cones was determined by measuring the radius, doubling it to get the diameter and then multiplying that by pi (3.14). Students were also directed to a site for help in this, . Finally by multiplying the RPMs by the circumference, wind velocity in centimeters by minute is found.

The seeds we planted at the beginning of March are all sprouting. The potato plants are especially large, and the sugar snap vines are climbing our trellis. Please stop by the garden to see all the new growth.

We have all three beds planted now thanks again to Farmer John Wilson from New Earth Farm. As he did in the Fall he came back again at our last meeting to donate his time to help our students plant varieties of lettuce, arugula, tat soi, mizuna, sorrel and two types of kale. We even planted plants around our garden sign; thornless blackberry, bay leaf, lavender and rosemary. Our perennial strawberry plants are already producing ripe, red strawberries to sample.

We drained the rain barrel to water our new seedlings and made worm tea from our vermicompost bin to sprinkle on all the new plants. We hope to feast on our harvest before school is out and even donate some of our vegetables to help those in need.

Spring is a wondrous time to see plants grow and transform. Our students can document this in their garden journals to study the science concept of “changes over time”.

Have a wonderful Earth Day this weekend! Remember, even small steps make a huge impact on the health of our planet and ourselves.

1 comment:

  1. wow!cute..its nice to see the children smiling while holding the fresh vegetables