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Day Campers Learn Garden Skills from County Master Gardener Volunteers

From Soil & Water Conservation:

Asheville, North Carolina, April 16, 2019 – Last summer, 29 children, ages 8 to 12 enrolled in a summer day camp hosted by Dr. Wesley Grant Sr. Southside Center where they learned a variety of lessons about gardening. The camps are a collaboration between the Buncombe County Extension Gardener Volunteers and Asheville Parks and Recreation. The Extension Master Gardener Volunteers invested 2 hours a day, Monday-Friday during the summer to instill skills for the next generation of gardeners. The entire program totaled over 167 volunteer hours from the planning process to the end of the day came.

Gardening lessons include soil structure, composting, vermiculture, pollinators (including birds), insect identification, parts of plants (seeds, roots, parts of a flower, fruits/vegetables). The lessons are taught using hands-on, experiential techniques. The children’s favorite activities in 2018 were making worm bins where they named all the worms “Gary”, painting wooden birdhouses, and writing thank you notes to their parents using flowers they pressed on the first day. In all, the children took home 15 projects and were able to take what they experienced home to their families.

The first time day camp program will return in 2019 after a large success from the first year. The 2019 program is scheduled for June 24-27 at Walton Park in Buncombe County. 

A special thank you to our Master Gardner Volunteers and team members who were involved with the program from start to finish: Carol Brown, Suzanne Wodek, Nancy Good, Shirley Phillips, Jill Prior, Nina Fox-Holladay, Kay Green, Judy Hamrick, Mollie Milner, Mary Ann Snedeker, Anne Stafford, Susan Spencer.