By Elizabeth Langevin, Camp Kalsman’s Farmer
Catching back up with Elizabeth’s blog as she reflects on the close of the first session!
It’s hard to believe it, but the first session of camp is already over! Two weeks went by really quickly, but it was a ton of fun. I ended up teaching about 2 sessions per day – one to older kids and one to younger kids. They were really different, but both groups were really engaged and interested and excited about gardening. I am constantly impressed by what these kids know about how to grow their own food.
Since I had built a garden with the older kids during the first week, I decided to do some different lessons with them the next week. We learned how to thin beets, we weeded, we made kale chips and lemon verbena tea, and we talked about food consciousness. With the younger kids, I planted cucumbers from seed, played a ton of different games, and did their new favorite activity – garden slug patrol. I thought they would hate it, but they actually love picking slugs out of the garden and feeding them to the geese that are on the camp farm across the road. I really like teaching them that we can eliminate pests by just watching our garden and figuring out what it needs, not by adding chemicals or pesticides. A little bit of time and attention can go a long way, and now our lettuce (which was being eaten in the first few weeks) looks beautiful. We harvested a whole box of lettuce that we are going to use for dinner.
Everything is growing really nicely. People told me that summer in Seattle starts after the 4th of July and they were right, it has been super sunny ever since then. The only thing that is difficult about the sun for me is that I have to water the whole garden, which can take quite a bit of time. It’s worth it, though, because the vegetables are growing so quickly. I have a ton of lettuce and spinach that is ready to harvest for the kitchen, enough kale to make kale chips with all of my kids, swiss chard for lasagna that the CITs made, and the eggplant, squash, and tomatoes are flowering. I can’t wait to see how everything looks in the next couple of days/weeks.
Read the full post and follow along on Farmer Elizabeth’s Blog