Lifestyle

Children's Storybook Gardening Program continues at Community Garden

From left, Charlene, Isaac, Shalom and Johann Smucker receive healthy snacks and await their storybook reading at the Arlington Community Garden July 12. - Kirk Boxleitner
From left, Charlene, Isaac, Shalom and Johann Smucker receive healthy snacks and await their storybook reading at the Arlington Community Garden July 12.
— image credit: Kirk Boxleitner

ARLINGTON — The Arlington Community Garden hosted the second session of its Children's Storybook Gardening Program July 12, and organizers encouraged families to check out the third session later this summer.

The Garden Club worked with the Friends of the Arlington Library to present "Jack and the Beanstalk" June 7, and on July 12, Claire Cundiff read "Peter Rabbit" to 25 children, as they sampled watermelon slices, green carrots and gooseberries. Following the story, the kids got their own worm farms,in plastic containers that they took home, to learn how composting works.

"It was so popular that we actually ran out of worms," Garden Club member Charleen O'Neal said.

This year's final session is slated for Saturday, Aug. 16, from 10-11:30 a.m., where the story will be "The Little Red Hen."

"That story involved planting wheat to make bread, so our kids will get their own little planter pots of wheatgrass that they can decorate," O'Neal said.

O'Neal promised that next year's monthly program would start in March rather than June, allowing them to conduct six sessions.

"This year was a sampler, to see if the program was even viable here," O'Neal said. "We got a great response, though. People have really wanted to be part of this."

O'Neal looks forward to fostering an even greater level of partnership between the Garden Club and the Friends of the Library.

"If we can get kids reading and gardening at the same time, that's great," O'Neal said. "If we can make it fun for them, they'll want to do it on their own."

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