A Taste for Learning
P. Press: Growing Trends
Master Gardeners Cut Flowers
Strong Bodies and Minds
Nat. Teachers of the
Models in Library
Writing, Weeding and Seeding
lend a green thumb
Serve the Governor
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variety seeds that produce healthy
and nutritious foods. We are committed to helping keep our food supply
safe. We grow some local, older varieties in order to promote
biodiversity which is being lost with modern hybrids.
The bulk of Our company
also packages seeds
through the FEDCO Seed Company.
The Seed Division sells seeds to local growers while
learning money management and sustainable business practices. We
have fun and learn some Mathematics, English and History along the
Seed Company was been developed in cooperation with Eli Rogosa
Kaufman, a International
Development Research Centre doctoral fellow in
Eli has excellent ideas, hands-on
projects and an Activity Guidebook for Seed Saving.
work is featured in FEDCO's seed education program, From
Generation to Generation.
and growseed.org for ways
to be involved in her program.
Why Save Seeds?
Everyone knows the expression "Don't put all of your eggs in one basket".
We practice this concept whether we are buying stocks, trying to eat
all sorts of different foods to get a variety of nutrients, reading
many books or websites for variety of ideas or when we choose a variety
of friends to do a range of activities. This practice may be most
important when it comes to growing varieties of plants for seed and
food. The more we lack genetic
diversity in our food and seed crops the greater the risk of damage
and disease. Think of the Irish Potato Famine or the Dutch Elm
Disease. Learning to build biodiversity in
our garden through
seed saving is one of the most important human activities we can
Look through any cookbook from 100 years ago and
you'll see many more vegetable choices in the recipes....and lots more
information about food preservation and preparation. Even when
developing new resistant varieties of plants you still need the old
breeding stock many of which are being lost and forgotten.
It is a challenge to all of us to learn about our food system in order
to understand the source of our nourishment.
Seed saving is also a powerful way to learn about
our own history and culture, whether it's cooking bean-hole-beans using
the beans my grandmother saved & grew or it's growing out the "Old
Jake" rutabaga (turnip) saved off a shipwreck in Witherspoon's Cove in
North Haven, collected and saved by our friends at Medomak Valley
H.S. The students become engaged
in history when it can be brought to life using tangible examples such
as our wall of seeds.
Before being hired into the THMS Seed Division, students should have
completed their apprenticeship
Try this math exercise testing seed
germination to determine the viability of your own seeds.
Have students conduct two trails:
Trail 1 in 80 degree temperature,
Trail 2 at 50 degree temperature.
draw the seed packet labels for your packets (or print out a Seed
template). Use last years garden catalog for
inspiration. Make copies and have the kids color. Cut and
paste onto the seed packets. Include a
separate sticker on the back of each packet with germination rate and
Have students make pencil drawings of vegetable names
images. Rub drawings onto linoleum and carve (use board for
carving surface). Stamp onto different color ink pads or roll on
paint. Carefully place stamp on the seed packet and lightly
Do not push as it will distort the image. Practice on paper
before stamping your seed packets. If the stamping gets too messy
or time consuming you can always scan the image and print onto stickers.
Don't forget to put your business name, address and contact
info on every packet. The children should add a short set of
directions on how, when, and where to plant the seeds.
is a great project to integrate
with the Art teacher. Bring in some parents on this one.
There are all sorts of fun ways to save seeds. Of course, the
bigger they are the easier they are to clean but we like the challenge
that saving our own lettuce or tomato seed brings. Our favorite
is to put all of
our different colored beans into baby jars which we keep on shelves in
Mr. Thurston's room. We learn a lot of history through the
stories we learn about the seeds we save and the plants we grow.
A few of the students are responsible for keeping the thousands of seed
packets in our supply room labeled and organized. These seeds are
used for our own planting and experimenting. Other students test
the viability (germination rates) of our seeds while others keep a
separate inventory of current seeds which we use for retail. Most
of the gardening students give tours and workshops to kids from other
schools which we always give seeds to for their own garden projects.
In the spring, a small group of seventh grade gardeners teach all of
the sixth grade students a lesson on Maine beans before everyone gets a
to plant our own saved beans.
In the fall, after the new garden students shuck the beans, they
are cooked in a hole in the garden so we can enjoy some
bean-hole-beans just like our ancestors did during wood-cutting
Please drop us a note
if you have any
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This site was created and is maintained by THMS Garden