Our beautiful School Garden was founded by the Pine River Garden Club in 2016. The raised beds were built by a small group of devoted volunteers, using Earthbag construction and a stucco finish. The beds serve as seating in an outdoor classroom for all to enjoy. Club members donated over a thousand hours of their time with the intention of making a difference in the lives of our youngest Bayfield residents. Thank you, Pine River Garden Club!
The Garden Gnomes Club was formed in the 2016-17 school year. Maria Miller and Rob Stafford took the lead in helping more than 50 students discover the new garden after school. Students learned to plant, weed, water, harvest, cook, and explore the garden. Two groups of students even had the opportunity to plant our garden starts from seed on a field trip to Spring Mountain Growers in the spring of 2017! The mission of the Garden Gnomes Club is to help everyone appreciate gardening as an art form, to grow nutritious food, and to share what we learn about gardening and cooking with others.
Classroom teachers are currently designing units that incorporate the garden into their grade-level standards and often take classes to simply read or write in the great outdoors. One of our garden mottos is to "Think Outside, No Box Required"! Students sometimes choose to spend time in the garden during recess, before and after school, or with their families on the weekend!
In the fall of 2017, the Garden Gnomes club added 36 students, and a third teacher to this popular after-school program. Maria and Rob were happy to welcome 3rd-grade teacher, Amy Bissonnette to the team! Students harvested leeks, onions, garlic, tomatoes, basil, cucumbers, beans, chard, kale, squash, and strawberries... all Gnome-Grown, right here at Bayfield Elementary School!