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By: Clay Steward
The Greenville Garden Club has recently expanded their garden as well as received some donations. One of their big donations was from the University of Missouri Extension office. They donated 10 raised garden beds, eight feet by three feet, to the Greenville Garden Club. Each grade at the Elementary has their own raised garden bed. These beds make it a lot easier to pull weeds out. It is also to be noted that Mr. Payne’s High School and Jr. High classes helped put these beds together for the garden club.
They have also received money for dirt, topsoil, and compost. The Ozark Foothills donated 100 daffodils and paid the club two dollars for each flower to be planted. Since planting them, all of the flowers that have bloomed are very pretty. They have also received a building, hand tools, and kids’ gloves through donations as well. Outside of these donations the group is working on getting a grant for a greenhouse.
Kids have recently helped spread mulch around the garden beds and the preschool, kindergarten, and the Little Bears Kidz Kollege have all started to grow sunflowers. Also growing are cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, okra, popcorn, watermelons and cantaloupes. Cindy also has some plants that she grew herself in her own greenhouse that are ready to go into the ground.
The Jr. Beta Club has made plant markers for the garden recently for their community service project. “There are a few kids that really do know a lot about gardening,” stated Cindy. The group noted that the kids that are not necessarily interested in getting their hands dirty are more interested in the market part. The Greenville Garden Club is also going to start selling their produce at the Greenville Farmers Market. The Jr. Beta Club will be the ones selling the produce and they might be able to also sell seeds as well. the produce will likely take place when school starts back up after summer break. The summer school classes will also take part in caring for the garden. Since Greenville has started their own garden, the group has noticed other area schools starting one as well.
Recently, the group became 4-H official. Their funding is still done through the school, but they have received a certificate that says they are official. Mrs. FInch is intending to make shirts for the garden club in the future per Larry Allen.
The gardening is all done organically. The group thinks that it’s a good thing for people to know where their food is coming from. Mike Allen has recently been doing some tractor work in the garden which has helped immensely. Allen has also started to make some fish fertilizer for the garden. The group said that their garden is three times bigger than last years. They also stated that sometime they would like to start worm beds.
The idea for this garden started with Leon Marler, a retired janitor of the Greenville R-II school district. Whenever he and the other guys would take out trash he would always say that there was a good spot for a garden. All these years later, it finally became a reality. The Greenville Garden Club is always accepting donations. If anyone is interested in making a donation or helping in the garden, there is a facebook page where you can privately message Cindy or contact the school.