Week 9- October 14, 2017

Hello Gardeners!

We have now moved to the maintenance part of the growing season. We have Master Gardeners from all over the state coming this next week, so everyone worked very hard to make sure the gardens were looking their best.

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Notice some have smaller plants than others. These are probably re-plants

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Isn’t this pleasing to look at? See how nice the mulched walk ways look as well! Way to go guys!

We plucked all the weeds, and removed large debris and trash. All brown and yellow leaves were removed from plants, and insects (leaf-footed stink bugs, caterpillars, and cucumber beetles) were destroyed.

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Look out for the green lacewing too! They are a good bug and eat aphids.

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Pollinators are everywhere!

Remember that cucumber beetles can be found on green beans, yellow squash, and of course cucumbers 🙂 Bugs hide under the leaves of the cole crops, so make sure you’re checking them very well. Marigolds and cucumbers were harvested. Did you know you can eat marigolds? The flower is delicious on salads!

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Harvest artfully arranged. 

We made sure that everyone had tied up their green beans. Some kids were able to harvest kale this morning as well. Some cabbage leaves may need to be removed so as not to overshadow the tiny radishes. A few plots had to re-seed lettuce in the empty spaces. Lettuce can be tricky to plant because the seeds are so small. There are lots of YouTube videos about lettuce planting so check some out! All the plants were thoroughly watered, not forgetting the marigolds of course, who aren’t reached by the irrigation systems. Don’t forget irrigation lines must be checked every week for clogs with our super special unclogging tool- the paper clip!

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Those cole crops look amazing! The gardens really speak for themselves, don’t they?

This weeks JMG activity in the Sunday House was from the Learn,Grow, Eat & GO! curriculum. This curriculum is based on research and evidence done by Texas A&M and is available to all schools. We often teach lessons from it here at the gardens. The program itself takes kids all the way from learning how plants grow, to planting an actual garden at their schools, and then harvesting it and tasting stuff right in the classroom and learning what good food our body needs! If you’re interested in this program for your school, contact me or Ruby (our youth gardens coordinator) at ruby.zavala@ag.tamu.edu

The activity we did today was called “Garden Skillet Sizzle” and the kids learned how to properly clean and prepare squash, bell peppers, tomatoes, and zucchini into a delicious snack.

It might be cool to have a conversation with your kids who maybe doubted how this gardening thing would all work out. Are they feeling differently now that they can see their hard work paying off? In our instant gratification society, the garden can be a friend that takes a while to get close to our hearts.

I am out of town the next five weeks, so please welcome my friends who are taking photos for me! They are various section leaders and parents. Your help is SO appreciated friends!

-Kelly

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