Blog

Garden lessons, school garden

Back to Class

As the state of Washington comes together to take care of each other and get the vaccine–making it safer for students to return to school–Nicole and the students haen able to get back out into the garden.

Some of the most recent lessons that the students have been working on involve learning about pollinators! Nicole and the students are not only learning about the functions and form of pollinators, but they are also designing their own. Engineering pollinators from materials is a great way that students can practice Next Generation Science Standards that keep them on track for science and environmental literacy. 

In the school learning garden, students get an opportunity to search for real live pollinators and observe what colors of flowers they are attracted to. The pollinator color investigation reinforces the importance of pollinators in our garden and gives students the chance to come up with ways to encourage more pollinators to visit our school garden.

Since Spring is here, learning about the pollinators is a great transition back into the garden after a year and a half away. As we welcome your students back to the on campus gardens, they will notice changes that they or their peers have helped participate in during one of our many work parties.

During the work parties, we have added a few new beds, including a garden bed style from another culture. The newest bed, called “Hügelkultur”, is a form of German mound gardening. The unique hill shape allows for the sun to hit it in different ways so that more sun-loving plants can grow on one side, and more shade tolerant ones on the other. It also allows for more plants to grow since there is more surface area in the bed than if it were on a flat surface. Finally, it is made out of logs, which will decompose over time, adding rich compost to the soil.

During the work parties, we have added a few new beds, including a garden bed style from another culture. The newest bed, called “Hügelkultur”, is a form of German mound gardening. The unique hill shape allows for the sun to hit it in different ways so that more sun-loving plants can grow on one side, and more shade tolerant ones on the other. It also allows for more plants to grow since there is more surface area in the bed than if it were on a flat surface. Finally, it is made out of logs, which will decompose over time, adding rich compost to the soil.

If you can, join us for our final garden party this Sunday, June 6th! We will be further beatifying our already gorgeous Cascadia Learning Garden.  

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3 Projects to do with Green Tomatoes

Well, it is now late October. Let’s be honest, those tomatoes on the vine out there are never going to ripen. Luckily, we have some suggestions for how to use them so they don’t go to waste!

Try these fun, family friendly activities this season and enjoy the memories for years to come. A few of them are also freeze-able, which makes them last all year! Give them a taste, invite friends over to help you eat them, or give them as a gift. Whatever you do, make sure to make good use of your green tomatoes this year with these 3 delicious recipes.

Job and Volunteer opportunities

Meet Taylor

Meet our newest team member, Taylor! Taylor Carstens (she/her/hers) is a current senior at Arizona State University studying Earth and Environmental Studies with certificates in Environmental Education, Environmental Humanities, and Cross-Sector Leadership.

Being from Auburn, Washington, she is excited to work with Foxberry Education to support her local community. In the fall she will be attending the IslandWood Graduate Program in Education for Environment and Community at the University of Washington. Some of Taylor’s favorite activities are baking bread, brewing kombucha, talking about mental health, and playing with her cat Grandpa.

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DIY Self Care class- sign up today!

Saturday 1:00-2:30PM PST/ 4:00- 5:30 PM EST
January 23, 2021

Instructor:  Nicole Parish

Treat yourself to a fun, relaxing, self-care experience. Gift as a holiday or birthday present, or host your friends for a safe, socially distanced spa day at home! In this workshop, you will learn how to make four awesome projects for self care using 8 simple household ingredients. We will be making bath bombs, face masks, salt scrubs, and hair masks to use during or after the party!

All students will receive the Zoom recording of the workshop to watch at their convenience for two weeks after the workshop. Participants may choose to observe the virtual workshop and work later, but you may also work alongside Nicole during the demo.

Recipes and a tool list will be sent to participants who register through Sonoma Community Center.

school garden

Community in the Time of COVID

Despite the sometimes seemingly insurmountable uncertainty facing folks these days, the Cascadia School Learning Garden has remained a place where people can feel a sense of belonging. In addition to continuing garden classes this season, the school learning garden has been able to provide families with produce, seeds, starts, and a place to safely and tangibly connect to the school itself.

And, as Garden Teacher Nicole likes to say, when you take from the garden, you must give back to the garden. The Cascadia community has done a tremendous job at giving back. Students and families alike have found a sense of connection by participating in our garden work parties this Fall. We have maintained appropriate social distancing and adhered to the district guidelines while weeding, mulching, harvesting, winterizing, and tree planting, making a lasting impact for years to come.

A garden symbolizes hope. It represents faith in a brighter, better future.

The Cascadia Learning Garden is no exception. It has been there for families in this time of need, as they have been there for it. It will continue to bloom, grow, be fruitful, and whatever other garden metaphors you can think of as we continue navigating these trying times as a community with the common goal of staying safe, healthy, and connected.