TGS Orchard

TGS Orchard
Posted on 05/14/2021

TGS Orchard

Along with their developing gardening skills, our fifth graders have newly acquired knowledge in orchard planting!

On Tuesday, May 11th, a new fruit tree orchard was planted at school.  The non-profit organization, ReTreeUs, choose our school for an orchard that was slated to be planted last spring, but was postponed due to COVID19.

ReTreeUs has been planting orchards and providing educational programs across the state since 2012. They aim to “empower people to grow their own food and be healthy environmental stewards.” The orchard planted at TGS is valued at over $2000! The Flannel Shirt Fund also provided financial support for this project.

Richard Hodges and Shelley Kruzewski, ReTreeUs Program Manager and Program Coordinator, arrived at school in the morning with tools and trees, ready to put the fifth grade to work.  ReTreeUs board member, Waite Maclin, also came to help.

Twenty-eight fifth grade students did the bulk of the work! They were taught how to properly and safely use spades to cut a ‘pizza’ out of the sod, the job of mixing compost & soil, and correct techniques of planting and mulching. In the end, fifteen new apple, pear, and peach trees grace the area across from the playground. These fifth graders leave a legacy through this new orchard as they move on to middle school in the fall.

Many other grade-level teachers brought their classes to the orchard planting activity to bear witness to the event and learn a bit through short presentations done by ReTreeUs. The orchard is a place for all students to thrive and grow along with the trees.

Fifth grade teacher, Lynn Snow, applied for the orchard back in July of 2019. She will serve as the “Orchard Caretaker” with the help of her current fifth grade students and those in her future classes.