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Vernon edible garden built next to elementary school promotes food security to students

An edible garden has been set up next to BX Elementary.
An edible garden has been set up next to BX Elementary.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED/Erik Hrabovsky

A Vernon permaculture group growing edible gardens in the city has expanded to involve students and is teaching them about the benefits of creating a garden from scratch.

Erik Hrabovsky, lead with Vernon Permaculture, said the Vernon Edible Garden spaces have grown to include a third location this year. Last year, the group planted edible gardens at Vernon City Hall and at Polson Park that anyone can eat from if they need some fresh fruit and vegetables.

The group will come around roughly once a year to check on the gardens with the goal of having them be mostly self-sufficient and last year made about 20 meals from the two gardens that were harvested and handed out to those in need, he said.

READ MORE: Vernon group using public spaces to grow fruits, vegetables for the community

Wrapping up two weeks ago, Hrabovsky and a group of seven students from the Academy of Inquiry and Adventure helped build another editable garden on private land next to BX Elementary School.

“We got to reach both schools and the teachers at BX Elementary,” he said, adding together with the students, they created the new garden as part of an eight-week course.

“We ended up making our own soil by doing a fast compost method which was probably the most exciting thing for all of them,” Hrabovsky said.

Together, they planted eight tree species on the plot with the goal to create a teaching environment so students can learn where food comes from.

He hopes to see those seven students come back in the fall to see the fruits of their labour. The garden contains a combination of different trees, perennials and other fruits and vegetables from buckwheat, to peas and eggplants planted.

Hrabovsky would love to see a whole edible garden park in the city one day.


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