NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - A group called Resilient Nacogdoches is leading a project that teaches children about growing fresh produce. It involves a children's garden, but the final lesson is much more significant.
"Eww. A worm!" a child exclaimed.
"That's a good sign. That's a good sign," said Jim Lemon, a Resilient Nacogdoches member. "That means it's good soil."
Children's shrill yells over seeing worms in a garden plot is Resilient Nacogdoches member Jim Lemon's first lesson to gardening.
"If we can teach the young the value of soil versus dirt," Lemon said. "If we can teach them the value of growing food versus buying it. We can be doing something."
The TJR Garden Revitalization Project will teach sustainability with the help of activists passionate about learning how to best provide their neighbors with fresh produce. Earth Care Ministry is a participant.
"Encouraging others to get into local foods, local foods infrastructure, seeing how we can build the local food economy," said the Rev. Kyle Childress with Earth Care Ministries.
The alliance has already led to a number of garden spots at the Nacogdoches Senior Center. The Golden Gardens sustain seasoned gardeners.
"Some for our own use, some for the community and some for the senior citizens and some for the people in the Senior Village," said Sylvia St. Andry, a Golden Gardens member.
So certainly a farm to school concept can work for the young sprouts too with a few necessary lessons along the way.
"Apply the knowledge and skills that they're learning in math and science every day and put it into a real world situation and make it relevant to what they're studying," said Malinda Lindsey, Nacogdoches ISD's director of curriculum instruction.
Resilient Nacogdoches will stick to the fun stuff.
Other organizations supporting the TJR Garden Revitalization are Healthy Nacogdoches Coalition, SFA Sustainability Club, and NISD Campus Gardens Committee. Vegetables should be ready for harvest this spring.