The Garden at Oswegatchie School is a sustainable organic garden where children get a hands on experience learning where their food comes from while developing an appreciation and respect for nature. The Garden will be a learning center to teach gardening as well as incorporating art, music, literature, math and science. It is a place where children are encouraged to join in and participate in the process of creating, developing and maintaining the garden!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Water, Weed, Harvest Event 7/1/13

Our first harvest, 2.3 lbs. of veggies!

Today was cloud covered and humid. The threat of rain kept most people away.  It didn't dampen the spirits of our most dedicated gardeners who showed up bright and early and got right to work. Mother Nature took care of our water needs last night so we got right to work weeding. The pumpkin patches needed the most work. The raised beds are filled to the brim with foliage so the weeds are kept at bay there.

Weeding the Three Sisters bed
  A couple of students who haven't seen the Garden since last week brought their garden journals to document the garden's growth. The first words out of one child's mouth was "whoa, look how big everything got!" I was thrilled that he brought his garden journal and was happy to document his findings.
After weeding a couple of the dug beds, the kids were really itching to do some harvesting. Part of the fun was hunting for the veggies that were ready to be picked. They started in the squash bed because it was predicted that the yellow squash would be the first one harvested. It was! Next it was on to the cucumber patch. Five were ready to be harvested today with several more coming in the next couple of days. I don't know what was more fun for the children, finding the the veggies or picking them. 

searching for a ripe one

What a beauty!
The string bean bed was the next stop. They got a handful each of green and purple beans. My daughter started munching as soon as she picked them. After picking the beans the girls ran over to the tomato bed hoping the would find a ripe one. It is still a little too early but there are plenty green ones on the plants that look promising. 

Proud gardeners!
After searching high and low for ripe goodies it was time to weigh the harvest. We are going to keep track of all our harvests so we can compare week to week and year to year exactly what is coming out of the garden. We keep track so we can determine if our gardening practices need tweaking or which months are best for which vegetable.

 After the weigh in it was time for the taste test.
survey says.....

cucumbers are a thumbs up!

We managed to pack a lot of work into a two hour event. We also planted some of the herbs that were started in the classrooms weeks ago that weren't quite ready to go into the beds when the children planted the others. We put basil in the tomato bed and parsley in with the beans.

I wish you could smell the tomato and sweet basil, yuuummmyy!
Pest update: since spraying the all natural "Bug Juice" a few days ago we have seen a diminished population of cucumber beetles and NO squash bugs. After the rain subsides we will spray again as the instructions suggest spraying every few days. As an added safeguard for our precious blooms, we added several yellow sticky traps purchased from Johnny's. The bugs are attracted to the yellow paper. The paper is coated with a super sticky coating that traps them and keeps them away from the plants. No chemicals needed. 
Harmless (for humans) sticky traps in the tomatoes.
Another note on the pest front. We found a different critter in the squash bed today. Not sure what it is and are currently researching to see if it is a good bug or a bad bug. If you know what it is send us a message.


  1. It's amazing how fresh and delicious veggies from the garden taste! Getting covered from head to toe in dirt and bug bites was totally worth it when the final outcome of all the hard work is so rewarding.

  2. Oh, I love that I've found you and your amazing school garden! I am so happy to find people gardening with children as I have my degree in Environmental Education, I work with children and have a love for gardening and our earth :-) Congrats on the wonderful harvests!