Students learn tunnel-style gardening
RURAL ROLETTE – Wolford Elementary students were invited to visit Janelle Anderson’s high tunnels located a few miles south of Rolette because of “Farm to School” week. Before going, the Wolford students engaged in a few pre-learning activities. A high tunnel is a structure built to extend the growing season in an area. It is an unheated greenhouse that can improve the profitability and productivity of a garden. The tunnel is covered with heavy plastic and uses the sun’s rays to heat the inside.
The Wolford students were amazed at the size of the plants and the vegetables that were grown in these high tunnels. From 8-foot tall tomato plants to corn stalks as high as the plastic covering of the high tunnel. The first high tunnel built by the Andersons was such a good investment that they erected another one just this past year.
Mrs. Anderson gave the students a real treat when she picked peas, showed them an easy way to open the pods and then told them they could eat the shell and all. She also informed the students that many of the vegetables grown in the high tunnels have better taste.
Getting to see and walk through the high tunnels was quite interesting for the Wolford students. Who knows, one day one of them may choose to have a market garden and because of Janelle Anderson, they will choose to construct a high tunnel in their own back yard.
– Wanda Follman, Wolford K-2 teacher
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