Creatures in the Garden

Produce is popping up everywhere here at the State Road garden. Of course we have to thank all of our sponsors, volunteers, and Grow La Crosse leaders for making this happen, but can you think of anyone else who we owe and even greater thanks to? Ill give you a clue, they are small, but come in all shapes and sizes, have between 6 and 8 legs, and are usually considered pests. BUGS!!! IMG_6309

The State Road Summer school kids recently interacted in the garden with a lesson about helpful and harmful bugs when growing your own food. Can you think of some helpful bugs? We talked about spiders, ladybugs, worms, and bees! All of these bugs and many more are helpful because they fertilize, eat harmful bugs, and pollinate. Pollination is a very important part of the life cycle of plants. They cannot produce fruit or even seeds unless they are pollinated. Put in even simpler terms, without bees and other pollinators, there would be no food from our garden to eat!IMG_6310

After some talk about helpful bugs, the children were informed about the less than helpful bugs. Next the children grabbed some magnifying glasses to go around and see what kind of bugs they can find on the plants and observe to see what the bugs are doing. Are they biting the plant? Do they make their homes on the plant?  Are they pollinating them?

Finally as a thank you for helping search for bugs, the summer school kids got the chance to slice, and sample cherry tomatoes and two different types of cucumbers-the cucumber you would normally see in the stores, and the smaller kind of cucumbers that they use to make pickles.  The kids had a blast being able to cut up and sample some yummy veggies.

There is never an end to the fun at State Road Garden!

Thank you Mayo Clinic Health System – Franciscan Healthcare for your corporate sponsorship which allows us to connect more children to healthy food and nature.