Kid’s Corner- Lights On Gardening Program


By Kristin Vogel 


Entry #5

Tuesday, July 27th, 2010


The heat and sunshine go on, which is great for our gardens.  Today’s class started with the usual chores…..weeding and watering.  We pulled up our spinach that had started to bolt, and marveled at the speed with which our green beans are growing.  The pumpkin patch is looking great, too.  Big orange flowers are popping up everywhere, soon to be followed by baby pumpkins.  

After our chores were complete, we started talking about bugs.  We talked about bugs that are bad for our gardens, like aphids and cabbage worms.  And, we talked about beneficial bugs, bugs that eat the bad bugs.  These include lady bugs and green lacewings.  We happened to have a bag of 1000 lady bugs on hand, as well as some green lacewing larva.  Unfortunately, the camera was forgotten, but try and picture this in your mind……a bunch of 4th and 5th graders, hands and arms crawling with lady bugs, running around the community garden and distributing bugs to each and every raised bed.  It was craziness!  They also dropped pinches of lacewing larva in each bed.  Hopefully, these beneficial bugs will eat all the soft-bodied pests, and all of their eggs.  No chemicals required!  

After releasing our insect friends into their new homes, we went on a hunt for any and all insects we could find.  We looked under the big, scratchy leaves of summer squash, we looked on green tomatoes, and we looked on the stems of celery and potatoes.  We didn’t find much, except for cabbage moths!! These destructive mamas lay eggs on our veggies, like broccoli, kale and cabbage, which hatch into worms with voracious appetites.  Whole crops can easily be destroyed if these worms are left unchecked.  The moths, which are white, may look pretty as they flit around the garden.  But, don’t be fooled!  Several student gardeners were on the mission to destroy these moths.  It was not an easy task, but they were brave.

Next week is our last class.  We are going to finish up our bat boxes and have some fun in the sun.

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