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Garden Crew reorganizes

February 27, 2015

Illinois is home to some of the most fertile soil in the world. It is no surprise that Monmouth College utilizes this rich resource through campus activities, including the Educational Research Farm and Garden.

The Educational Research Farm and Garden gives students hands-on experience with agriculture and teaches them to be self-sustainable.

According to Garden Crew member freshman Jovan Petrovich, “Agriculture and sustainability are interwoven. Food will always be an issue to human kind and if we continue on our wasteful ways, we will not be able to support further numbers in the future. Learning about agriculture and sustainability is more important now than ever.”

After the 2014 spring semester, the Garden House was torn down with plans of rebuilding. While plans have been made for rebuilding, it may be years before students can call the new Garden House their home. Most students who lived in the house either graduated or left the Educational Garden, creating a need for new students to join in the efforts.

“The Garden Crew is in the process of rebuilding the group and making new changes to the Educational Garden,” said junior Rachel Masch, the sustainability scholar of the Educational Garden.

“We are planning on being a real organization on campus and possibly working with other work forces in the Monmouth area, such as Jamieson Center, County Market, Save A Lot and McDonald’s.”

In order to start these projects with community businesses and organizations, the Garden Crew must start seedlings in the next few weeks in the greenhouse, moving the small plants into the ground and caring for them throughout the season. They also maintain general upkeep of the garden and their six acre mini-farm on 12th street. “We all work on everything as a collective group, everyone is educated in the methods we use so everyone is able to accomplish any task needed,” said senior Ellen Hanes.

“I have been involved with Monmouth’s Educational Garden for the past two years. I transferred to Monmouth as a junior. At the Involvement Fair I saw the garden’s poster and was immediately interested. I started regularly attending Saturday morning workdays with the rest of the crew and I was amazed by all the life and freshness that came out of the organization.”

During the harsh winter months, the Garden Crew uses the time away from the soil to organize the spring’s planting. Meetings are currently held Saturday mornings at 8 a.m. at the Educational Garden to discuss seeds and the upcoming planting season. For more information on how to get involved, contact Craig Watson or Ellen Hanes.

Julianna Graf
Courier Staff Writer

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