Split, space, poke, plant. Huddled around Mr. James Willms, students watched as the OE3 Coordinator demonstrated the four steps of planting garlic. Students learned how to split the bulbs apart, space out spots, poke deep holes and then plant cloves one by one. Once they had these four steps figured out, students got to work and the Regenerative Farm came alive, a flurry of planting and learning and conversation.
With gardening gloves available, most students chose to use their bare hands instead, welcoming the feel of dirt and the cloves on their fingers. As students split the bulbs apart (being extra careful not to peel the cloves!) Mr. Willms wandered about, reminding students of the impact of their work. When ready to pick and be harvested in the summer, the garlic bulbs will be donated to local food banks and delivered to families in need. When Mr. Willms first envisioned the Farm, it was for projects exactly like this one, a space where students could be put in the centre of learning and doing and giving back. And, by using responsible growing methods, doing so to benefit not only local food banks, but also the climate by rebuilding soil organic matter and restoring its biodiversity.