The Original Garden at Oswegatchie School was designed, created and maintained by Rob & Cynthia Terry. It was a sustainable organic garden where children got a hands on experience learning where their food came from while developing an appreciation and respect for nature. The Garden was a learning center that taught gardening as well as incorporated art, music, literature, math and science. It was a place where children were encouraged to join in and participate in the process of creating, developing and maintaining the garden!


Tuesday, November 9, 2021

Saying Goodbye

 Saying goodbye to the school garden project

The time has come for us to say goodbye to the school garden. My wife and I have put so much of ourselves into this garden these past 10 years, but events over the last year and especially this last month solidified the fact that it's time for us to put the garden to bed for the winter and walk away. The time is long overdue and we need to move on and put our efforts into a project that is more supported and accepted. 

We've built this garden with the help of students, staff and parents from an empty space, and over the years have created a thriving ecosystem where only weeds and dry soil once existed. We now have an abundance of worms in healthy rich soil, lots of critters living in the raised beds, a family of rabbits that seem to have taken up residence, butterflies, dragonflies, frogs and praying mantis.  Over the summer we planted milkweed that attracted monarch butterflies. They laid eggs and the caterpillars hatched. We then fostered them inside when we realized the milkweed and caterpilars were being killed by herbicide overspray. We were able to hatch 8 butterflies that we released back into the garden. Our gratitude is abundant for those who saw us and understood the importance of what we accomplished together. You will forever be in our hearts.

We've learned a lot about what to do and what not to do. We've probably put more into this project then we should have, but we both have a passion for nature, teaching, growing healthy food and the environment, and we wanted to share that with our community.

We are hoping that someone will step up and take over the garden next spring so our efforts won't be wasted and this project will live on. With the right support you can do wonders with this space and the kids really seemed to enjoy being outside in the garden.

While we've enjoyed this experience tremendously it's sad to say goodbye, but we are very excited for our next venture where will be growing on a much larger scale!

Best wishes and happy gardening!

Rob & Cynthia Terry