Project Title: Garden Composting
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Garden Composting at Stonewall Jackson

By: sclegg

[image] composting

In the fall all students K-5 plant broccoli, cabbage, or other cold weather crops.  When the students harvest, they lay out the unused parts of the plants in the compost pile. 

  [image] cabbage harvest

Mr. Painter, our Outdoor Lab Specialist, continually teaches the 580 students about decomposition and its purpose.  He shows the students the creatures in the pile, and when it is cold outside, he has the students feel the heat with their hands.  Sometimes he even puts a thermometer in the pile to demonstrate the activity of the decomposers.

[image] Garden Row 

Between the garden rows, the students help pour buckets of mulch.  In the spring when they plant potatoes, the students push aside the fresh mulch and dig up the compost in the walkway to pile around the base of the plant.  Then they spread the fresh mulch back into the pathway.

 

  [image] Gabriel Potato Harvest

Mr. Painter calls the city when we need another fresh batch of mulch to replenish the compost and he adds coffee grounds from Starbucks, food from the cafeteria, and leftovers from the teacher's lounge.  The message is loud and clear: plant parts go into the compost pile, NOT in the garbage.

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