Planting Roots Preschool plants vegetables

Alicia Louters/Lingle Guide The vegetables planted today will grow all summer. When students return in the fall, they will see their produce and do hands-on activities with it.

FORT LARAMIE – The students of Planting Roots Preschool spent time planting vegetables in their geodome last Thursday, March 25.

The geodome was constructed last September to extend the growing season for the school’s plant projects, according to Laura Curtsinger, Planting Roots Preschool director. Two experts and several community volunteers built the geodome, which was grant funded.

Every year, the class plants a variety of flowers and vegetables in the winter and spring, said Curtsinger. The vegetables planted Thursday will go into the geodome for the summer.

When students come back in the fall, they will be able to see and learn about their produce. Last fall, for example, the students made pumpkin pie from seeds they had grown.

“It’s so much fun for them to be able to see the whole process,” Curtsinger said.

Next year, according to Curtsinger, the project will deal with tomatoes.

“We will pick our tomatoes and show them how they can make spaghetti sauce,” Curtsinger said.

She continued, “It’s all about teaching these guys where their food comes from, and how they can grow food for themselves.”

Each student got their own seed packet. The selection was a variety of peppers and tomatoes.

Meadowlark Hearth in western Nebraska donated $100 worth of certified organic seeds. Planting Roots Preschool donated any additional seed packets needed.

For Meadowlark Hearth, the decision to donate to Planting Roots was a natural one, according to co-owner and co-manager Beth Everett. They had heard about the school’s need from Fort Laramie Mayor Joyce Evans.

“Our intention is that people know about agriculture, and it’s never too early to start,” Everett said.

She continued, “When children see a seed sprouting, it is a connection they will remember.”

Angel Kirby, assistant instructor of the preschool, and Evans helped students find the trays labeled for their seeds. With direction from their supervisors, students planted what they had been given.

The students seemed to enjoy their time in the warm, sunny geodome. Jazlynn planted some sweet red bells. Chloe said her favorite part about planting was touching the dirt.

After planting, and on her way to the playground, Tonya said, “I can’t wait to see them grow.”

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