HUNTINGTON — Drive along Washington Boulevard in Huntington and you’ll catch a glimpse of Meadows Elementary School’s new school garden, comprised of seven raised beds soon to be brimming with vegetables as a real-life lesson on how food is grown.
The beds were installed after school Thursday by Marshall University and parent volunteers, as well as a handful of students, funded by the university’s nutrition education program.
The support has been overwhelming since Marshall first pitched the project to the school, said Tiffany Lockhart, a registered dietician with Marshall’s nutrition education program.
“Whenever I introduced this idea, parents, the PTO and the principal (Connie Mize) were so excited. I’ve already gotten so much help,” Lockhart said.
“I’m just the one that’s putting it all together, but I’m hoping they continue to make it bigger and better, that things grow and they just have fun with it.”
Lockhart said the garden will begin first as a fall garden with a few cold-weather crops before developing into a larger spread with spring planting.
The idea behind the garden is for students to develop a greater knowledge of where food comes from and to encourage them to try fresh fruits and vegetables. Once built, the gardens will be managed by Meadows’ classes along with help from parent volunteers.
PTO President Claire Dewdney, who has two children at Meadows and gardens at home, supported the project enough to come out in the afternoon heat to build it.
“Anything that would make our school look more appealing and anything to get the kids more interested in gardening and harvesting, I’m all about,” Dewdney said.
The project was also made possible by Lowe’s, which donated 50 bags of organic potting soil for the raised beds.
For a photo gallery from this event, go to www.herald-dispatch.com.