Dibanisa Lesson 4: Growing the Future

Posted under Eco-Tourism Blog by Grootbos on 22nd August 2012

Last week's lesson took place at the Growing the Future Food Production and Life Skills Training project. The theme of the lesson was sustainability and using our resources in such a way that there is always something left over. Susan welcomed the kids and explained the meaning of sustainability to them.

The next part of the lesson was presented by Anchelle Damon, one of our Growing the Future students. She showed the kids around the garden, telling them about the various herbs and their uses.

She also showed the kids the veggie gardens, telling the kids about the various plants and giving them examples of companion planting such as inter-planting the cabbage family with the onion family in order to keep the pests at bay. While the kids walked through the garden, they got to taste various herbs and veggies.

The kids also had a look at the permaculture garden. Anchelle said to the kids that permaculture is a shortened form for 'permanent agriculture'. Anchelle told the kids about the importance of having good soil and that when gardening, you need to think in three dimensions, showing them the structures which they have set up for the peas to latch on to as well as the structure which they are going to lead the cucumber plants up, once they start growing. The purpose of this is that these plants provide shade for more delicate plants like lettuces.

The kids also paid a visit to the free range chickens and pigs and were very eager to get to know the female pig, called Scratchy!

Anchelle also showed the kids the wormery, telling them about making 'worm tea' and the compost heap, which is then worked back into the gardens.

We then went for a walk, where each child received a bottle of water for our journey. There were two different bottles of water - one was brown in colour and the other translucent. Susan asked the kids what the difference was between the two, and then explained that the water comes from the mountain and the colour comes from tannins in the plants which then wash into the streams.

We then walked through the fynbos about halfway, Susan asked the kids to finish their water or throw the rest of it out.

We also saw the Steynsbos forest, representing a different ecosystem. We could see that the forest was divided into three different layers - the herbaceous undergrowth, the canopy and the emergent layer as represented by the White Stinkwoods.

After such a nice walk we made our way back to Growing the Future.
We want to thank Susan, Anchelle and Viola for hosting the kids. We look forward to our next lesson, which will be an art lesson.

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