There’s something bittersweet about covering Schoolyard Garden beds at the end of the fall into winter season. The Schoolyard Gardens team uses landscape fabric or burlap to cover garden beds after they’ve been cleared of garden debris to ensure that they’ll be ready for planting come springtime. The fabric suppresses any pesky weeds that inevitably pop up when the soil begins to thaw.
Though the process of covering Schoolyard Gardens beds throughout Kansas City can be tedious, it’s a good reminder of our relationship to garden growth throughout the seasons. While the garden is resting throughout the winter months, students can still creatively connect to their memories in the garden by creating their own garden journal.
I peeked into the Schoolyard Gardens blog archive, and found a great post by former SYG AmeriCorps service member, Josh Ellermann, who shares suggestions on garden journaling while providing simple steps for students to create their own garden journal: https://kccg.org/keeping-garden-journal/. Encouraging students to reflect on their time learning and growing in the garden helps to maintain a thread of connection to their garden experiences.
Over the years, I’ve found that my most-favorite journal entries are the ones with mud stained corners; I’ve jotted favorite garden memories alongside notes on insect removal, watering schedules, and harvest plans. And, most-recently, my garden journal jots included a silly haiku inspired by the arrival of a sunset after a full day of covering garden beds…
‘December is here
Time to let the garden sleep
Wake me in springtime’