School District plans to grow vegetables for lunch program - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

School District plans to grow vegetables for lunch program

Posted: Updated:

















(Fourteen beds will be full of vegetables the East Valley School
district plans to use for school lunch programs as soon
as this summer)


Anthony Gomes | KHQ Local News

SPOKANE VALLEY, Wash. - Lynette Romney was sitting in a meeting last Spring where students were complaining about the quality of apples and produce in their lunches.

"It occurred to me that we have a ton of fallow fields in this area, why don't we just grow our own?" Romney asked.

So the East Valley School District now has five acres of land plowed and ready to plant as part of a community garden taking shape between East Valley Middle School and East Valley High School.

Fourteen beds on the district's land will be available for community members to grow fruits and vegetables, and the district plans to use part of the garden to grow tomatoes and carrots for school lunch programs.

"You can't get any fresher than that," she said.

She said some seeds will go into the ground next month and the local produce could be incorporated into school lunches as early as this summer and next fall.

Botany classes at East Valley High School have grown starts of fresh vegetables which could take root in the garden.

Members of the Key Club hung door flyers in the neighborhood educating the community about the garden they were invited to join.

The garden has become a life lesson away from text books and outside the classroom, according to Romney.

The garden is also expected to save the district money as they grow some of their food rather than having to buy and ship it to schools.

"We are an agricultural district," she said. "It makes sense that these kids will have food that is grown in their district."

A grant of $6,000 is being used to pay for fill dirt, bed liners and other supplies. Romney is working with fence companies she hopes can donate fence to protect the garden.

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