The Junior Gardener program is open to preschool and elementary school children who are the children or grandchildren of Garden Club members. This group has been dedicated to promoting educational projects that strive to teach children a love of gardening, an appreciation of nature's beauty, and the value and protection of our natural resources. The group setting provides a forum in which to teach children methods of cultivation and utilization of plants to enhance our quality of life, as well as the responsibility toward to the environment and civic beautification.
Activities for the coming year will include a floral arranging workshop, fall floral design project, a visit to Life Care Center of Acton for a Thanksgiving garden therapy session, two horticulture programs, personalized garden stepping stones, and bulb planting at the Acton Arboretum.
April 2008 - Floral Design
On Thursday, April 10, 2008, the Junior Gardeners gathered at Winston Flowers in Concord Center for a "behind the scenes" tour and hands-on floral demonstration. Our tour guide, Winston's sales manager, was very knowledgeable and has been in the floral business for 33 years. We learned interesting facts about Winston's floral procurement process - in particular, details about the tulips from Holland's fields and the roses from South America. The children even got to tour the 37-degree walk-in cooler! Winston's sales manager then taught the kids how to each assemble their own spring bouquet incorporating ruscus, hyacinths, tulips, and roses - all tied with raffia and wrapped in bright-colored tissue. What a treat for both the AGC adults and children alike!
November 2007 - Garden Therapy
On Wednesday, November 21, 2007, the Junior Gardeners gathered for some pre-Thanksgiving Day cheer at the Inn at Robbins Brook in Acton. The activity, which was held in the Inn's Country Kitchen, included a floral workshop designed to assist the residents in preparing floral centerpieces for the Inn's Thanksgiving Day tables. After the vases were filled with water and distributed to the participants, each Junior Gardener was paired with a Robbins' Brook resident, and together, the team created beautiful table arrangements using ivy-bowl vases, vibrant-colored mums, and various fillers including baby's breath, goldenrod and statice. Acton Garden Club parents and grandparents assisted by distributing the flowers and giving floral design tips to the group.
October 2007 - Floral Design
On Thursday, October 18, 2007, the Junior Gardeners met for their first meeting of the new school year. The meeting included a fall floral design workshop incorporating pumpkins and fresh flowers in vibrant fall colors. Each child selected a pumpkin to use as the "vase" for their arrangement, skillfully inserted oasis, and began designing their floral creation. Acton Garden Club parents and grandparents took turns giving floral design tips to the children. Each child created their own unique floral arrangement to take home and share with their family. Delicious snacks and playing on the swing set completed the afternoon!
Gardening with Young People
The Gardening with Young People program has been activated in rotation with the Junior Gardener program. Four times per year, different groups of young people from the Acton-Boxborough community are invited to participate in a hands-on educational project involving the following interests: horticulture, floral design, conservation, civic beautification and garden therapy. The Gardening with Young People committee provides assistance and funding, if necessary. In the past, the committee has worked with cub scouts, brownies, schools, and the Acton Memorial Library Children's department.
Although our Gardening with Young People program is currently inactive, we hope to renew this program in the near future.
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