The Houston County Master Gardeners have awarded two $500 grants to two school districts this year, Caledonia and Spring Grove Public Schools. The grant competition was posted in late March and they received two excellent applications so decided they would award grants to both districts. The Caledonia School District will utilize their grant funds to purchase fruit trees from local nursery, Alpine Nursery, and establish a small school orchard with apples, pears and plums. Spring Grove will be purchasing and erecting a hoop building to extend the growing season.
Caledonia already has established raised beds and is currently planting crops that will mature in the fall such as squash and pumpkins. Both schools utilize their school gardens for fresh vegetables in the lunchroom and for teaching kids how to garden and raise fresh and nutritious food. Ongoing plans for the Caledonia school garden include building composting bins to compost kitchen wastes fall of 2014.