Over the past couple weeks, all four Kindergarten classes have visited Chesnut Garden.
First Garden Leader Carissa Malone welcomed Ms. Austin’s and Ms. Huitt’s students, giving them a short tour and showing them the (soon-to-be-harvested) sweet potato vines. When she pulled a sweet potato out of the ground, they loved seeing what had been hidden under all those leaves. They were also mesmerized by the white flies that swarm off of the vines when you disturb them. Ms. Malone explained that there are many different type of bugs, some specific to a certain plant, and these are called (unsurprisingly) the Sweet Potato White Fly!
The students then planted two different kinds of lettuce. Ms. Huitt’s class planted the Romaine and Ms. Austin’s class planted the Butter Lettuce. As they sowed the seeds, many children remarked that they didn’t like lettuce. Which was followed by the remark (even by the same children who said they didn’t like it): “I’ve never tried lettuce.” Ms. Malone told them that every time children try lettuce in the garden they like it, so they may be surprised! Ms. Austin nodded in agreement. They’ve seen it happen enough times to say that with confidence! Each child left with a sprig of rosemary to take home.
When Mr. Chicoine’s and Ms. Hobgood’s students visited, they spent about 30 minutes talking about the plants with Ms. Malone. They tried the Stevia, rubbed and smelled the herbs, and talked about compost. Even with nothing to plant there is always so much to see and talk about in Chesnut Garden: lizards, cicada shells, pretty purple sweet potato flowers and the smell of freshly cut chives are just a few of the many things that caught the children’s interest.