Earth club’s garden is growing


Zachary Santiago

Hewitt assisting students planting seeds in the garden.

The Earth club started planting their freshly germinated plants in January and they are beginning to flourish. Each student took home a potted plant over winter break to make sure that it fully germinated prior to planting.

The garden is thriving, despite some recent cold weather.

As Florida temperatures continue to fluctuate up and down and the weather remains inconsistent, the club has found a way to accommodate every situation. Through considerate research before winter break, students came together to select which plants would be planted first. For the first round of plants, the group chose a mix of flowers, like Zinnias, and Sunflowers, for the Bees to pollinate, as well as a group of fruits, such as Watermelon and Pineapple.

“The seeds seem to be doing fine because we are seeing sprouts, but we will have to keep monitoring them and hope that we don’t experience too many cold snaps moving forward,” Earth club sponsor Nicolette Hewitt explained.

Since these have been doing well, the group has also planted Snapdragons, peppers, sweat peas, and Salvia plants. Senior Earth club member, Kellan Rivera helped build the garden beds and planted the watermelon seeds.

“The garden is a great way to learn about things like gardening that we can’t really take a class on in school,” River explained.

Senior Earth club member, Ethan Stinson agreed with his fellow member.

New sprouts in the garden.

“I knew nothing about gardening, so it’s cool to experience, especially if we can eventually eat these plants we created,” Stinson said.

Another problem the Earth Club has encountered while taking care of the garden has been an influx of ants. Hewitt after much research, discovered coffee grounds were a safe, organic way to keep the ants away from the plants. Coffee grounds can also act as a fertilizer, help supress fungal disease, and aid in vermicomposting.

While the progress in the garden is substantial, the Earth club still has many projects they want to complete this year.

“We want to set up a hydroponics garden and a composter, as well as successfully grow our first round of fruits and vegetables,” Hewitt explained. “The Earth club members have put in a lot of hard work, and I’m so proud of our progress so far.”