June 10- Today was the first day of gardening class. We started out getting our supplies (garden bible, Gerber knife, gloves), and then proceeded to cut apart potatoes. When we cut them we made sure that they had at least two eyes so they would have a better chance at survival. Once they were cut we left them in the room to dry. We went outside to learn the gardening basics. Afterwords we chose which beds we wanted and started weeding. Those who finished early got to start planting. Others who had to leave early weren't able to finish and had to pick up where they left off on the next day. Even if the work took forever and was exhausting, we all knew that it would be worth learning this valuable like skill for the future.
June 11- Today was the second day of gardening class. We went down our gardens to finish any weeding that had to be done and finished planting. We had to look on sheets to find which plants were companions and which were adversaries so we could get the best growing results. We also tilled some of the other beds to break apart the soil and manure so it would be soft enough to plant in. when we finished the planting we watered everything. The work was tiring but it was very good experience.
June 12- Today we had all finished planting in our own garden beds so we expanded on to those we had tilled. We planted any left over vegetables in the green house and even started planting potatoes. We measured all the way across the beds to plant them far apart. Michelle and Kirsten brought beautiful rain barrels that they had painted and we set them up according to the colors of the rainbow. They really gave a nice touch of color to the scene. A lot of students were starting to see that gardening was a lot more fun than they thought it would be and we all make a great team.
June 13- We started a new project. Mr. Bahn cut up some wooden planks and taught us how to assemble a raised bed. Since a majority of the students are girls, most of us didn't have much experience with power tools. It took a while to get adjusted to using them but once we got the hang of it making the beds was much easier.
June 14 - We worked on building raised beds the whole time. It was very hard and exhausting work, but the beds still looked great once they were built.
June 17- Today we started another new project. There were flags places by every plant that said whether it was a weed or a native plant. All of us worked on getting the weeds out to make room to plant more native plants. When every flag and weed was removed, we split into two groups. One group went with Michelle to work on building more raised beds. The other went with Mr. Bahn to start planting the native plants. After about an hour the groups would switch jobs. These projects were going to take quite a while to finish but the end result would make the garden area look 10 times better.
June 18- We continued with our projects of planting and building. When we planted we followed Mr. Bahn as he drilled holes into the ground to make the planting easier. We were careful to remove the plants from their containers, and once they were in the ground we covered them with mulch to make sure the soil didn't dry up. When we built with Michelle we had to make sure there wasn't too much dirt on the ground that would make the boards stay off the ground. We also had to make sure we lined up the beds perfectly together so it gave overall good presentation. It was a slow process but the time flew by.
June 19- Today instead of taking turns planting and building, after the first few hours we all joined into one team to plant together. After a while of planting we took a break to walk around the school and look at some of the native plants around the school and seeing what they looked like when they were fully grown. One thing was for sure and that was the garden would look beautiful when the plants were fully grown.
June 20- We went back to our normal routine of planting and building. By this time we had cleared out a lot of the green house and it looked like we were almost done with planting. The beds, however, still needed a lot of work. We were over half done but the process was so slow it seemed like we would never finish. Still we worked our hardest to accomplish as much as we could. It was just a normal day in the gardening class.
June 21- Today we went to the Midwest Energy Fair in Custer, Wi. The day started off rainy and cold but the sun came out and we enjoyed it from then on out. We went to three different educational classes. The first one we attended was very interesting. We learned about different ways to cook and eat food to have a healthier diet and body. The second class we attended, we learned about permaculture. It was very interesting. The third class was about collecting rain water. We learned that there are many different ways to collect rain water. This trip was not only beneficial but it was very enjoyable.
June 24- Today was very hot out. We worked hard though. We finished planting the native plants in the native plant area of the garden. We learned alot about the different plants that we planted, whether or not they were plants that liked dry and sunny areas or plants that liked moist and shady areas. Not only did we learn about the native plants, but we also learned about the exotic plants such as the many different kinds of weeds. We also worked on finishing the raised beds. We only have three left!
June 25- Today was yet another hot day. Despite the weather, we still worked just as hard. Since we finished planting all the native plants, it was time to start weeding the beds. Some of the beds weren't so bad, but a couple of them had quite a few weeds. We got rid of all of them eventually though. We also finished building all 38 raised beds today! We were really happy about that. They take alot of time and hard work. But it all paid off because the raised beds look great!
June 26- Having finished planting and building all of the raised beds, we took the day to look over our beds and weed them. This was also the day we started to work on our website. After a while of weeding two people would go inside and start writing journal entries and captioning pictures. It was a nice break from being out in the hot sun all day.
June 27- Today we went on another field trip. After meeting up we went down to the Nelson Berry Farm to pick strawberries. They were sweet and delicious and best of all completely organic. When we finished picking we went on a tour of the rest of the farm learning many helpful techniques to raising a healthy garden. After the first tour we drove up to Medford to the Ranger District where Mr. Bahn showed us an area where he planted native plants, and then went to a Chinese buffet for lunch. A little while later we went to a few other gardens to learn more techniques. When we were done with at the other farms we looked at the Medford Community Garden where people buy their own areas to have beds and grow crops. It was a very fun experience for everyone and we all learned some very important things for the future.
June 28- We spent the first part of our day in the garden harvesting strawberries and rhubarb from our gardens. After reaping our spoils we walked to Mr. Bahn's house to prepare lunch. While waiting for the spaghetti squash to bake we took a tour around Mr. Bahn's garden. When we came back in we sorted which strawberries to keep for dessert and which ones to put into our smoothies. We all helped cook and when we were done we ate a very healthy and extremely delicious meal of spaghetti, steamed asparagus, and strawberry smoothies. We all agreed that we should eat at Mr. Bahn's more often.
July 1- When we arrived to class today we started our with picking the ripe strawberries from our beds. We also cut off the lower branches from our tomato plants so they could put more energy into the top ones and stay healthy. After that we searched through our potato plants killing any potato beetles and destroying egg clusters they laid. When we were all done in our gardens we went up to one of the local farms to learn more growing techniques. When we finished there, we went to Mr. Banh's house to cook another healthy lunch. We had grilled brats and hot dogs with sauerkraut, salad fresh from the garden, and strawberry smoothies. It was another great day in gardening class!
July 2- We started our morning out with picking all our produce that need to be picked, then we took a field trip to a local garden. We learned many new things! We learned different ways to ferilze you soil, different trellising techniques, different wasy to multch things and also how to put fencing over your plants to help keep animals from eating them. After our field trip, we went back to Mr. Bahns house to make brats, salad, and smoothies!
July 3 - We took another field trip touring local gardens. We learned more useful techniques and found out that many gardeners are also beekeepers which makes it easier to get their crops pollinated. At some of the gardens there were animals that were kept for fertilizer. At the last garden aside from gardening we also took time to tour the house and learn about different kinds of insects that are kept on display. When we arrived back at the school we picked more ripe strawberries, some lettuce, and killed more potato bugs. It was a very memorable trip that we won't be forgetting for a while just like all trips we take are.
July 8- After a nice break, we came back to gardening. For the first half of the day we did the usual. We weeded our gardens, picked ripe strawberries and lettuce, and killed more potato beetles. This time, however, we also cut off the stems curling on the garlic plants and kept them for a mild garlic replacement. For the second half we went inside to watch a video about dirt that was very inspirational. It was a nice relaxing day and we can't wait to come back to the next class on Thursday!
July 11- Today we picked lots of potato bugs! We also weeded all the beds and checked other plants to see there were any other pests around. We then walked over to Mr. Bahn's house to cook pizza!
July 15- When we arrived to class this morning, we went and dug up all the lettuce to give away to other people. After that, we went and got soil samples from different areas of the garden to put in our soil sample to give to the soil labratory. We also took coffee cans with the bottoms cut out to push into the ground in different areas of the garden and poured water into them to see how fast the water would drained in to the soil in those different areas.
July 18- Today we went into the garden and checked the potato plants for potato bugs! The bugs are getting fewer and fewer! Mikenna and Brianna water the whole garden while the rest of us went and pulled weeds in the beds. After that we went and picked all of our produce. We then went back inside to work on our soil analysis. After we finished our soil analysis, we went over to Mr. Bahn's house to make some nice, cold, refreshing smoothies!
July 22- Today we checked for potato bugs! Barely any! We multched the onion and lettuce beds with old grass clippings to keep out the weeds. Then we picked our produce from our beds and also picked some flowers from the native plants in our garden.
July 25- We spent the first part of our morning with picking potato bugs! There was not that many of them because their lifespan was at the very end! Yay! After we picked potato bugs, we weeded all the beds so that the weeds wouldnt take over all our plants. We then started to stain all the beds to brighten up the garden! The beds are coming along and are looking very nice!
July 29- At class today, we tansplanted some extra plants we had planted in the greenhouse! There were lots to plant! Then we started to stain more of the beds. The beds are coming along great!!
August 1- The class continued working on a project today. The project tested the nutrients in the soil to help us find out if it was sufficient for plant growth. It took a few days but we were finally done testing and ready to compare our results. We came to the conclusion that our soil was pretty good for growing plants and it had improved from last year. Afterwords we harvested the ripe vegetables in the garden and headed over to Mr. Bahn's house to learn how to ferment beans!
August 5- Today the class started out by harvesting more vegetables. Everyone got a lot of zucchini, cucumbers, beans, raspberries and more. Then we all took a few minutes to check out the prairie area where all the the things we planted had bloomed and flowered beautifully! Then we all went to the computer lab to do a worksheet and learn more about the CSA system. After that we went to the green house to clean up and reviewed the sheets. Just another typical day for the gardening class!
August 8- Today was an exciting day! We had to get to school early and load up the suburban to go to Rhinelander. We went to the college where we learned many interesting things about potatoes. We also went out to the fields to sample some of their potatoes. After the college we checked out the community garden. Everything was set up and organized and the crops were all growing in well. The last places we went were Home Depot and Menards to observe the gardening sections. Then we went back to the garden to harvest and weed. We were all tired by the end of the day but the things we learned was well worth the trip.
August 12- We started the day by loading up the wheelbarrows with all of the leftover vegetable plants in the greenhouse. It took a while to get everything planted but it will be well worth it in the long run when we have crops in the fall. During the planting we also took some time to empty out the garlic bed. After a whole class of planting we also harvested a whole bunch of delicious vegetables!
August 15- Today was a very fun day. Everyone got their own rain barrels! We all went out on the sidewalk by the greenhouse and spray painted which everyone had a fun time doing. We also got our own cans of spray paint if we ever need them. After we spray painted we went to Mr. Bahn's house where we learned of a few different recipes for potatoes. Everything was so delicious!
August 19- Today we finished our rain barrels. Some of the students painted while the others splatter painted and made a mess on the floor. On the bride side their rain barrels looked great! After an hour of painting we went down to the gardens and harvested. Then we went back inside to watch a few videos. One of them showed the tragedy of what's been happening to bees everywhere and the other showed pollination in progress!
August 22- Today was the last day of gardening class. We watched a clip about the importance of having a garden and what it can do to help your community. After that we went to the gardens to harvest and got all the ingredients necessary for making salsa. Over at his house we made made delicious salsa and meat to put on the tortilla chips. We had fun this summers and made many memories that we will never forget. And hopefully this class inspired the students to make gardens of their own. Just one garden can make a huge difference in your whole community!