GROWING & HARVESTING FOOD
- FEB-APR: PLANT PEAS & POTATOES, GARLIC & ONIONS
Some of the first plants to go in the garden are peas. The last of the garlic and small onion starts can also be planted early. Potatoes are good as soon as the soil can be worked, though won't start growing much until it begins to warm.
- MAR: ORGANIZE & ORDER SEEDS
West Coast Seeds offers big boxes of last-year's seeds for school gardens. Salt Spring Seeds, Foxglove, and Fraser's Thimble also donate seeds.
- MAR: REQUEST SEEDLING DONATIONS
Figure out how many seedlings we'll need and make requests to Country Grocer, Thrifty's and other garden stores.
- FEB-APR: PLANT SHRUBS & FRUIT & NUT TREES!
At SSE, we have funds for perennial shrubs and trees, including those for pollinators and fruit and nut producers. These should be planted in early spring. (Raspberries, Rhubarb, Apple & Hazelnuts and more).
- 1st WEEK APR: ALL-SCHOOL SEEDING DAY
- SOW SEEDS DIRECTLY for warm season crops, such as Amaranth, Corn, Pumpkins, Shelling Beans, Snap Beans, Squash, Sunflowers and Dill.
- Plant warm season transplants into garden during late Spring or early Summer (May-June), such as: Basil, Cucumbers, Eggplant, Melons, Onions, Peppers and Tomatoes for harvest when returning to school in September.
- VISIT FARMS, SEED PRODUCERS, RESTAURANTS
Salt Spring Seeds, Foxglove Farm, Chorus Frog Farm, Bullock Lake Farm (and others) are all open to visits. A Victoria field trip could include The Gardens at HCP which has great school programs.
- VISIT OTHER SCHOOL GARDENS
Galiano has an amazing greenhouse and garden, plus great Island food programs. Phoenix School has offered to host a pizza day for a SSE class or two in their cob oven. GISS garden and greenhouses are amazing!
- COMMUNITY FARMS, GARDENS & PROJECTS
The SSI Farmland Trust is building The Root and would love to teach kids about it (179 Beddis), and SSI Community Services (contact Simone Cazabon) runs the Burgoyne Community Farm, the Food Bank and The Harvest Cafe (just behind the Core Inn, across from the Library). Transition Salt Spring runs the Community Gardens behind the pool. The Abbatoir processes local meat and would be fascinating.
- GIVE A SSI GARDEN CLUB TOUR
Members are interested in seeing school gardens and can offer expert advice. Contact Diane Markle if interested.
- SHARE A POSTER @ SEEDY SATURDAY
Saturday, February 9th, 2019.
- INTERVIEW FARMERS & CHEFS
Several farmers have expressed interest in hosting field trips (Salt Spring Seeds, Foxglove Farm, Chorus Frog Farm, Bullock Lake Farm) and chefs like Mark Kilner (GISS) and Brooke Winters (B'Nurtured Food Cart in Ganges) use lots of local produce.
END-OF-YEAR GOAL: Plan the all-school June Harvest Lunch with the PAC Garden Committee
Add some soil to the compost and turn regularly
Prepare garden beds for planting in March/April: Add compost to the planting beds when thawed.
Composting and mulching of perennials
Refill wood chips in garden pathways, play areas and gathering areas
Discuss how water flows through the garden: from watering, to percolation through the soil, to absorption by plants and evaporation
Ecosystem Science - Pollination
Transplant perennial herbs, shrubs and trees
Care for garden perennials with compost and mulch
Observe insect, bird and animal pollination in spring flowers
Art and Culture in the School Gardens
Mosaic stepping stones
Cob & Rammed-Earth Infrastructure
Garden Coordination & Maintenance
Coordinate monthly garden work parties (with parents, students and community members) to help with garden projects and prepare for spring harvest festival.
Facilitate class tours to local farms or conservation societies.
Invite local garden resource person/elder/expert to present and facilitate discussion on relevant gardening topic.