Summer is almost here, and that means school holidays are on the horizon. National gardening week encourages more people to take part in the healthy and productive outdoor activity of gardening. It is the UK’s largest celebration of gardening. It is an excellent time for young families, children and new gardeners to get involved and learn about gardening.
Whether your school already has a beautiful garden or you’re looking for ideas to get started, we’ve put together a handy blog including tips for supporting your well-being at work through gardening.
How to care for your school garden
A school garden is a great way to get kids involved from an early age and can teach children the importance of caring for the environment. Getting kids involved in gardening has a bigger effect on children from an early age as they go through physical, emotional and social development in their childhood.
We know that busy SBMs are often overwhelmed with the challenges of managing not just one garden but several at once. School gardens can be more complicated to look after than a home garden because they're larger and have more varied areas of growth. Starting out with a small garden will be more manageable and don't forget it'll need looking after during the school holidays too!
Here are five tips on how to care for your garden during the holidays:
Tip 1: Harvest everything before the holidays
If there isn’t going to be much activity in the school garden during the summer, it might make sense to plant a garden in late May or early June that will be ready for harvest in autumn. Start by harvesting everything in the last few days before the school holiday starts, whether it's planting seeds for flowers, vegetables or fruits.
Tip 2: Get fresh compost ready for when your plants come back after the holidays
Before your vegetable plants disappear over winter, give them a good feed with fresh multipurpose compost. You could turn your vegetable patch into a no-dig garden if you have enough time.
Tip 3: Ensure to cut any grass and remove weeds
Doing this before the school holidays will ensure your school garden is kept tidy and the plants flourish. The removal of weeds is very important to your school garden as they can kill plants if they are overgrown.
In getting this done, your school garden will flourish and look perfect for when you return to school. Make sure to keep this maintenance going throughout the holidays too.
Tip 4: Find volunteers to help you
Create a schedule so that the garden is checked regularly. Involve parents and teachers in maintaining the garden. Aim to find members with a passion for gardening. Not only this will benefit the school garden, but it will have a therapeutic benefit. This will help make sure your school garden is clean and well maintained, ready for crops to grow in the summer.
Tip 5: Plant health check
Whether you are transplanting plants or growing your own seed, make sure to inspect the plants to prevent pests. Having an infected plant can harm the whole garden. Aside from plant infections, bugs can be eliminated using the pesticides
Managing and caring for a school garden may seem like a lot of work but building a community of support can be a great help to keep the garden in top shape. Before you start planning for your summer holidays, take a moment to refresh yourself on how to care for your garden at school.