Teachers from 14 schools in Ascension Parish built raised beds, planted potatoes and lettuce and planned their school gardens during a recent training session at the LSU AgCenter Botanical Gardens-Burden Center.
They were participating through a “Greauxing Gardens” grant project, which was made possible by a $30,000 donation from PotashCorp PCS Nitrogen of Geismar.
The grant is coordinated by LSU AgCenter assistant professor of horticulture Kiki Fontenot, who led the training. Each school received lumber and soil for three raised beds, tools, an irrigation system, fertilizer and seeds. The teachers used electric drills to assemble a raised bed during the training, and then planted potatoes and lettuce.
Under the direction of LSU AgCenter Extension Horticulture Agent Craig Roussel, an Ascension Parish Master Gardener will partner with two teachers from each school to aid with planning and mentoring the program.
Primary and middle school students, including special-needs students, will learn how to grow their own food.
Participating schools include Central Primary, Central Middle, Dutchtown Primary, Dutchtown Middle, Galvez Middle, Gonzales Primary, Gonzales Middle, Lakeside Primary, Lowery Elementary, Oak Grove Primary, Pecan Grove Primary, Sorrento Primary, Spanish Lake Primary and St. Amant Primary.