Master Gardener Colin Maitland has been working with a primary school in Battersea. The children have been keeping planting diaries with, as Colin puts it ‘interesting and even humorous observations’. We find the entries completely charming and the notes evidence not only a great deal of learning but also excellent input on Colin’s part.
One girl in particular, Maidina, was ‘quite assiduous in making notes and was present throughout the year’, says Colin. Here is part of her diary for the year.
We were preparing the ground to grow veg. We use a hoe. We used all these tools. We found spiders, worms and snails.
Tools should be used with care. Tools and hands should not go together. We planted garlic, beans and grass.Wash your hands after planting.
The grass grew 2cm. The beans and garlic didn’t grow. The grass germinated. We had to water the plants as it hadn’t rain in days. Tall plants share the sun. Durring the half-term Norah took out her fruit and veg.
We watered the plants and there was no rain or sun. Have the plants grow?
Today we watered the plants. We cleared two beds for other classes and we saw snails. We used a hoe.
We can see plantens, potatoes, Jamaican sweet potato, yellow yam, South African sweet potato, coosh yam, coca yam (white pinkish, Gana), cona yam, green banana, white cabige, ripe planten, pumkin (make in soup), green bannana porridge, scotch bonnet, desheen (Jamaca), chili gree, chow-chow, crestefee, ocra, Giger, tomato, avacado (Granada), lady finger, rice, drinks, cod fish
Today we went out to the garden to see the planst. We waterd the plants because it hadn’t rain for weeks. We made plantens and we put them in the saucepan with oil. After that we ate them. Miss Falkner was not here and she missed all the fun! Two plantens fed seven people
We looked at 2 gardens, the garlic had grown but the rabbits ate the top of the garlic, the beans had grown, and there was 24 beans. We said next week we ought to pull out the blackcurrent, garlic and tomato. I want to grow broccoli, carrots.
I would like to grow broccoli this term. List of what I want to grow this term: brocoly, corots, beatroot, onions, peas, colylowers, rhubarb, logan berries, strawberries, tomatoes, potatoes, beans, pumpkins, cucumbers (longest and largest), obojins, fruits, vegetables, corshets, herbs, garlic, tomatoes
1 we put some soil from the composs. 2 next we put a bean in the soil. 3 next we put a lable, saying our name, the date and what we were planting. 4 after that we watered the plants. 5 finally we put them on a table.
Last week we looked at the plants we had made, we watered them and we gave them photosynthesis. They give us oxygen to sustain life. We planted some seedling in KS2 playground and coverd it with mesh.
Miss Faulkner’s plant is 90cm. Mine and Holly’s hight is about 70cm. The rest are about 20 or 50cm. Composs, watering cans/roses, canes, gloves, jacket potato. Some plant were still alive by cutting them on an angle. My plant was 67cm. Holly was 1m. Miss Bibby was 15cm, Sanabu was 80cm. The difference between Holly and Miss Bibby was 85cm. Mine is 60cm, Sanabue is 81cm, Holly is 1 metre, Miss Falkner is 90cm. Miss Bibbys was broken. We dug the field beans and the grass. We put up the canes. Rabit problem because they nibbled the top off the garlic.
Colin, who became a Master Gardener with the first cohort of trainees in June 2010, adds,
We have just begun a new year and I intend to learn from the mistakes of the past and and build on our experience. We have a new intake of keen schoolchildren. Those senior in the hierarchy, from having been indifferent at first, are now taking this seriously and we have been given a little more time each week and there is also a prospect of joining the school curriculum.
Contact your local Master Gardener http://southlondon.mastergardeners.org.uk/find-a-master-gardener/
Follow the South London Master Gardeners on facebook http://southlondon.mastergardeners.org.uk/2012/09/06/find-us-on-facebook/