McNaughton students create raised planter boxes so anyone can garden

For Moosomin Community Garden

May 27, 2024, 11:29 am
Ashley Bochek

Grade 12 students Porter Skulmoski and Zayn Leslie, and Councillor Murray Gray beside raised planter boxes the students made for Moosomin’s community garden.

Students at McNaughton High School have created raised planter boxes for Moosomin’s community garden so that everyone has the opportunity to garden.

“The planter boxes are to make sure we can be inclusive,” said Councillor Murray Gray, who started the community garden initiative. “The last couple of years we’ve had a couple of older people who just can’t do the garden because of the bending down. So, we want to make sure everybody has an opportunity to go out there and plant their vegetables so that is where the idea came from. They are made so if you are in a wheelchair you can still access the garden.”

Gray says the town and the school worked together on the project.

“The town paid for the materials and then school was gracious enough to put it together through the Industrial Arts program. I approached Mr. Bassendowski about it because I had been thinking about this for about a year. We don’t have any of them rented yet. We have a couple of plots left, but none of the raised planters are rented yet. We are hoping we might get the chance to rent the three planter boxes out. If they don’t get rented this year then they are there for next year and we will get the soil in them and the soil settled.”

He said the community garden has been going well.

“This is the fourth year with the community garden. It has gone very well. It’s a social place for people to visit, and the park out there, with the Labyrinth it creates conversation. Obviously, with the cost of food right now it is a huge issue and to grow a garden you can save some money on fresh produce.”

He said he makes use of the community garden.

“I really enjoy it. I started gardening there because of the fact it was my idea and now I am addicted. I love to go out there and garden. I grow just about everything. I have four plots now, so I have 600 square feet. I have mostly potatoes, but also corn, lettuce, carrots, peas, beans, just about everything you can eat from a garden.”

Gray said a wide range of people use the community garden.

“It is a combination of different people,” he says. “There are some grandparents that take their grandkids out there and show them how to garden, some old people for sure, some young families. It is a wide variety of people.

“I think there are three plots that are left. It is $30 to rent out a plot for the year. That is the same price that it started with. It has been a good project.”

“It is nice for the people who don’t have a yard and that is where the idea came from. People in the villas that don’t have a yard, or some people like myself who have a nice yard and don’t want to dig up and have a garden in, so it is nice to have it out there in comparison. The one thing I do need to add on at some point is a fence because the deer munch on it pretty good in the fall.”

“Everybody looks after their own plot. We just get it fertilized and worked up every spring. We put water from the town shop over to there, so there is about six different hoses we can hook up. It has been good.”