We have a new facebook page!

To view all of the recent happenings we have a new facebook page.

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Troy-Howard-Middle-School-Garden/461997233878911

New Garden Art Show at the Belfast Co-op

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The month of March is the THMS art show at the Belfast Co-op.  We have been doing this for at least 8 years and it is always fun to see what new ideas the kids come up with in Mrs. Sproch’s class.  The title this year is “You say tomato, I say tomato”.  Tomatoes in clay, acrylic, pencil, block cut and charcoal are displayed.  We also set up a full size farmer with a clay head and a basket of flowing tomatoes.

Jeremy Alex fund donates to potato project

The Jeremy Alex fund has donated money  to grow potatoes to be made into fresh French fries.  The fries will be cut and stored at the new Coastal Farms facility set up to process and store fruits and vegetables for local farmers.  We plan on highlighting the facility so more farmers will become involved and we can serve local, organic fries to the kids at the middle school.  Go to http://www.coastalfarmsandfoods.com/ to find out more!

Wild weather hits twice!

Two winter weather events have shaped the fortune of the garden project in  recent weeks.  The first was a rain and high wind event (70 MPH gusts) which resulted in the loss of one large lexan panel.  I was in Dominica visiting my daughter so the rest of the team worked into the night to close up the hole.  Upon my return the kids and I put greenhouse plastic film over the area so it will be watertight until repairs can be done in calmer weather.  The second was a large snow storm which dumped almost 30 inches of snow.  We will be spending the next few days shoveling the south side of the greenhouses so the sun can reach all the beds.  Farming in the winter can also be challenging!

On a side note I will be in touch with the greenhouse manufacturer Harnois about the susceptibility of their greenhouses to high winds.  This is the third time we have lost lexan in 10 years even though we have ropes over the greenhouse.  The pressure of the lifting panels actually snapped the ropes.  One panel of lexan 72 inches by 24 feet delivered to the school is over $700.  Please research thoroughly before building school greenhouses.

 

THMS (in the form of THMS) raised beds almost complete

The final design for the THMS raised beds was completed in early December and we had super weather to build and fill the beds by Christmas vacation.  Today was the last day of school and we weathered rain and wind to fill each bed with some soil and we will have plans for planting ready for our spring.  Below is a picture taken from the second floor.

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Banner cantaloupe year

The cantaloupes at the middle school were previously grown in the hoophouses and did well but this year we grew them in the garden (starting from seed) with only row covers until the plants were large enough to take off the cover.  The summer was not unusually warm but the melons really took off and we were able to harvest many large, sweet melons.  The best variety was Hannah’s Choice from FEDCO seeds.  We may try to transplant seedlings started in  the greenhouse next year and compare with seed grown directly in the garden.  A testament to their sweetness (the melons) is exemplified by the smiling faces below.

Troy Howard’s GREAT GROWING… Garden

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At the Common Ground Fair T.H.M.S got 74 ribbons. There are a lot of blue first place ribbons. There are some red and yellow but not much. Here at Troy Howard we are very proud of our growth in our 380 ft long garden. We had this one pumpkin that weighed 48.1 pounds that grew in our garden that also got a 1st place ribbon like our carrots. We also had some of our beans and potatoes. We compost our leftover food from our lunch and we also recycle our paper for our compost/ soil. Our soil helps our crops to grow huge and fresh with no bad chemicals. We got 1st place for our potatoes, beans, squash and other plants like flowers, rosemary, cowboy and pinto beans. We use worms and other helpful little bugs/ insects to help keep our soil fresh and healthy and good for the environment.

This year Troy Howard was very successful at the Common Ground Fair. We have two rabbits, one chicken and over one hundred students to add compost and soil. Our school garden is 380 feet long. We had huge corn stocks in the garden before we cut them down. We also had a really big tomato. We had A GOOD year for growing this year. We also sell our crops that we grow so if you are looking for some freshly grown fruits/ vegetables stop by in your spare time sometime next year and take a look at our produce. Stop by also to see all our ribbons from every year we go to Common Ground Fair!! Hope to see you soon.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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