Third grader gardeners in Ms. Kochon’s and Ms. Cribb’s Friday planted some new plants in our native plant garden, as well as trimmed back some of the existing plants in the garden.
The first time the third graders visited the garden, they examined the quality of the soil, the color and texture of the native plant leaves and stems, and compared these with the soil and textures of plants in the vegetable garden. They found the soil to be dry and fine and light colored and hard. The plants were often leathery, woody, light colored, and often had a strong smell. They thought about why these plants, growing naturally in San Diego, would have those qualities, and concluded that the lack of water in our region, as well as the amount of sunlight, had a lot to do with the qualities of the plants.
Planting in the hard native soil was not easy. Students took turns digging deep holes, removing plants from pots, and patting down the loosened soil around the roots. the planted Bear Grass, Wild Grapes, Scub oak, Jojoba, and Wild currants, which were all used by the Kumeyaay indians of San Diego County.
Other students used scissors to trim back plants such as White Sage, California Sagebrush, White Yarrow, Deer Grass, Narrowleaf Milkweed, and Yerba Mansa.