Early Children’s Garden

On Our Last Day…

The children had lots of caretaking to do on their last day in their Winter garden.  Beets and Broccoli Raab were harvested…

Some of the beets had odd shapes!
Give those roots a strong shake to get rid of the soil!
Choosing the best of the Broccoli Raab…


Everyone pitches in to harvest the veggies!

But there was a surprise in the garden-

When DID this great carrots appear?

This one must have grown overnight!
A new way to show off a carrot!

So everyone’s dinner will have some of these orange beauties on the table tonight!  And then the carrot tops and beet greens were added to the compost bin…along with some cornmeal to help get rid of the fire ants that were found hanging out in the bin!

These nasty visitors have got to go!

After cleaning up and a trip to Farmer Paul’s plot to help with his harvest, the children said their farewells to Farmer Jane until March.

Cleaning up is part of the job.

This fine group of young Farmers impressed eveyone who worked alongside them this winter!  And Farmer Jane is thrilled that they are all returning to start a spring garden in March…one that they are helped plan the vegetables they are going to grow.   These kiddoes have graduated to the next level of Farmer school…and Farmer Jane and her helpers couldn’t be more proud!

Many hands make light the work!

See y’all in March!

Plotting For the Spring…

Farmer Paul was on hand to show the children how he lays out his plot… walkways for moving around the plants and mounds of compost for seed planting.  Given his years of experience, Paul had lots to tell the kids about how to make it easier to grow veggies here in Savannah.

How Farmer Paul prepares his plot layout

The children grabbed shovels and pitched in to help Farmer Paul work the soil in his new plot….

This soil needs work!
Farmer Paul and his croo…

Then there was lettuce and turnips to harvest from the Children’s Garden.

LOTS of Turnips were ready for harvest today!
Turnips get pulled from the soil…
This lettuce is ready for a dinner salad!
And this lettuce will go in a sandwich or two!

And the morning ended with Farmer Jane asking the kids what they thought about their spring garden… big decisions were made and there was excitment in the cool morning air as the children voted on what new plants to grow and when to start transplanting the seedlings into the ground at the Farm! 

Farmer Jane and the kids plan their spring garden…

It’s going to be a very busy spring for these young Farmers!  

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What a Beautiful Day!

It was tee-shirts and shorts in the Children’s Garden today!  From the sun and the warm air, Farmers Jane, Paul and Hillary had the kiddoes thinking it was springtime already!  No matter really… because there was lots of work to do!
The children were eager to see if the onions were ready to harvest…but, alas, none were ready today!
But lots of turnips were big and plump and waiting to be picked…enough for everyone to take some home for dinner!

Farmer Paul needs some help checking the turnips….
Digging down to check how big the turnips are…

Then it was on to the Chard which needed to be sliced in order to harvest all those big greens.

One leaf cut….many to go!

In the middle of the harvest, several of the kids discovered some slow moving visitors to the garden…snails and worms too!

This snail is bound for the sprayfield!
Good for fishbait….but this worm got returned to the soil!
Snail interrupted…

As always, the refuge and other plant “trash” was collected and dumped into the compost bin…

Wheelbarrrows were needed for all the compost…


A good workout!

Once the Children had managed their plots, Farmer Jane organized a “search party” to forage for some uncovered Sweet Potatoes.

The Pied Piper leads the way…

And sure enough!  There were Sweet Potatoes galore in an abandoned plot…so many that the children thought they had hit the jackpot!

Underground harvesting…
How sweet it is!
Mom, how about some sweet potato fries?


This one took both hands to pull out of the ground!

Once all the gardening work was done, Farmer Jane gathered her troop around the table to talk about what the plan would be for the Spring Planting.   Opinions and suggestions were voiced… from carrots to pineapples!

A meeting of the minds…

And this Spring, Famer Paul will be making a special plot available to the children for growing unusual vegetables as well…kohlrabi anyone?

It was a great day in the Children’s Garden… and ended with the promise of even better things to come this Spring!

 The Winter Harvest Just Keeps on Giving ….

Farmer Jane has her young Farmers in such a good routine!  Check the crops…weed the rows…manage the compost….and then enjoy the veggies that are ready to bring home!  All good habits that the kiddoes will put to good use when they graduate to their own gardens and plots.  And of course, there’s nothing like impressing Mom with their skills along the way…

What a great harvest today!

Carrots, onions, turnips, kale, cabbage and even a cauliflower…all made it into the grocery bags to be taken home.

The kale needed a haircut! 🙂

Farmer Jane showed the children how to check to see if  the onions were ready…

“We’re going to let these onions get bigger…”

Farming is a family affair…even Grandmothers got in on the action…

Grammy is having fun too!

Weeds needed pulling, plants needed trimming … and the compost bin needed tending to…

A bit of weeding to keep our walkway looking good!
Time to work on the compost.

The last head of cabbage was harvested…

Cutting our last head of cabbage.

And then it was on to the dumpster with a wheelbarrow full of plants the children had pulled to clear out the plot…

Making a trip to the dumpster.
Being a good Farm neighbor…
Cleaning up after the weeding.

Farmer Jane enlisted her troops for one more job — shaking out new pinestraw along the walkway in Section A.  They did a great job and it sures looks a whole lot better!

First pinestraw down in Section A

All in all, it was a great harvesting day in the Children’s Garden!

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“Baby, It’s Cold Outside!”

From Farmer Paul’s Garden

The children beat back the blustery weather and managed another great harvest in the Farm.  Broccoli, carrots, beets, lettuce and a few tomatoes got picked and bagged from the children’s plots and Farmer Paul’s plot too… the kiddoes are in charge of Paul’s plants while he’s off travelling for the holidays!

The gloves were mighty welcomed for cold fingers…

Farmer Jane and her loyal camera-woman, Hillary, kept the children moving so no one got too chilled…just the moms perhaps!

“Thank goodness the sun was out!”

The turnips were carefully checked and just those with their tops above ground were picked…and then their leaves shredded and put in the compost bin.

Taking off the leaves and …


…filling up the compost bin!

The children were sad to see that their tomato plants were suffering from some blight…perhaps it really was getting too cold for them now!  But a few of the cherry tomatoes were picked and brought home to finish ripening on the kitchen window sill.
But there was lots of good news in the broccoli rows… the BIGGEST head harvested so far!

“Now that’s what I call a head of Broccoli!”

Once all the broccoli was picked, the children pulled all the old plants and composted them…getting things tidy’ed up and fix’in for the spring season!

Out with the old….

Now it’s on to the holidays and then the new year!  See y’all in 2013!

A Cool December Morn…

Farmer Jane and her helpers Hillary and Carol had a very busy agenda for the Children this morning.  Lots to harvest and lots to compost…

Big, ripe heads of Broccoli needed to be cut…and cabbage too…

And discarded cabbage leaves were collected and then added to the compost pile.

But there was still time for these hardworking kiddoes to find new ways to enjoy their vegetables!

And of course…there was plenty of time for the kids to proudly show off their well-earned harvests!


Everyone was on hand this weekend for the first major harvest of the Fall season!  Farmer Jane, and her assistant Farmers Hillary and Paul were kept busy directing all the activity in the Children’s Garden.

Beans had to be picked…onions had to be harvested…

And even a cherry tomato or two had to be taken home…

And don’t forget that those pesky bugs have to be gotten rid of.

And the first broccoli of the season was picked and then tasted!

Radishes and beans and carrots…oh MY!


The kids were mighty proud of their haul…


What a great group of Farmers these kids are!

“Farmer Thomas Reporting for Duty”…

Sometimes one person DOES make all the difference!  This weekend, while many of his fellow-farmers had holiday things they had to do, Thomas took up the lead and checked in at the Farm. And, of course, Farmer Jane had lots for him to do! 

After all that work, Thomas checked on Farmer Paul who looked like he needed some help.

Indeed, he did need some help so Thomas and his Mom gave it their all!

Congratulations, Farmer Thomas, on a job well done!  Next week, maybe the cabbages will be ready for harvesting!

Last week’s carrot was cool BUT….LOOK at this Bean!

Mornings like this one sift out the fair-weather Farmers from the die-hards!  The major chill in the air really was a true test of how much you love to farm… just ask the Moms who probably didn’t “layer-up” properly!

The onions and tomatoes and kale are still growing….slow but sure.  The children harvested some kale and lettuce and radishes then took home a few not-quite-ripe cherry tomatoes to put on their window sills….just to see if they ripen in the sun.So today was a day to check for those pesky bad bugs that just love to chew little holes in broad, leafy greens.

And then the children went on snail patrol… those guys are hard to find in the moist soil but once the kids filled a bucket of them… over the fence they went… never to be seen again (we hope)!

Farmer Paul enlisted the children to help him harvest some broccoli in his plot… There were beans to pick…and broccoli.

One Farmer got to taste this deliciously sweet veggie…even raw… it was YUMMY!

Our 1st Carrot!!

All that hard work really pays off when a Farmer is able to pull his very 1st carrot from the soil!


Besides harvesting carrots, the children transplanted collards and broccoli…

…and parsley and Italian Celery.

The onions were checked to see if they were ready for picking….but they weren’t.


And now that our Scary Spikey Sarah has been turned into more compost for the bin, that work had to be done as well.

Farmer Jane showed her young Farmers what Okra looked like that was ready to go to seed while Farmer Paul kept everyone busy harvesting some of his plot as well.

But after all the work was done…it was time to have some fun giving each other rides around the Farm!

This wagon is great for alot of things!

The Children’s Garden is the most beautiful spot at the Farm!

Marigolds and vegetables abound!

A final salute to Scary Spikey Sarah who will be missed!

Our scarecrow’s gone… but not forgotten!

Harvesting in the Children’s Garden

The cool weather is visiting the Farm more often these days…if only the rain would come with it!  But our young Farmers cannot be deterred by the watering duties required to keep things growing in their plots… and Farmers Jane, Paul and Hillary led the way on the children’s first major harvest day this past weekend!

Hip-deep in harvest green!

The kids put in a full morning picking ripe romaine lettuce and fat red radishes popping out from under the hay before finishing off the maintenance chores every Farmer has to do…making room in the turnip beds by transplanting the overcrowding plants and then trimming the chrysanthemums.  All the plant refuse was added to the ever-growing compost pile Farmer Jane started a few weeks ago… the kids are working that pile to make some home-grown compost for next season’s plants!

A Farmer’s work is never done…

Then Farmer Paul invited the kids on a filed trip across Doc Charley Lane…over to Paul’s plot to help him harvest some peas and beans.  There is nothing like seeing your food hanging on the vine waiting for you to come and pick it!  And while you may not have a hankering for peas…it sure is cool the first time you see them…ripe and ready to harvest!

Farmer Paul and his farmhands…

It was a busy day in the Children’s Garden…and ended with wonderful gifts from Little Miss Mary… charming bracelets for Farmers Jane and Hillary!

So cute and thoughtful!

The “BESTEST” part of the day was….

These young Farmers did start their day working hard…weeding and trimming the tomatoes and the radishes…and the onions… after all, work first…play next! 

“There’s a worm…you get it!”

But Farmer Jane and her stalwart helpers Miss Hillary and Mr. Paul kept things moving along quickly so they could all get to the fun stuff as soon as possible.

The weed patrol in action….


After a group discussion and a couple rounds of votes, the scarecrow got her name – “Scary Spikey Sarah” –  and her name tag proves it!

…now this scarecrow has a name!


The votes were taken and…








While there are other scarecrows in the Farm, Scary Spikey Sarah was voted the Best-and-Most-Creative by all the Farmers at the Festival…. so congratulations to Farmer Jane and her kiddoes for all their great work!

Then it was time for the PUMPKINS!!  Out came the little carving saws…and off went the flurry of small hands and big imaginations!  It was fun!

With a little help from a friend…
There’s lots of seeds to deal with…
Messy but perfect!


Next week, the potatoes should start popping, the cherry tomatoes should be ready for picking and the radishes should be asking to be dug up and eaten!  Things are moving along very nicely in the Children’s Garden… these kids are going to be great Farmers one day!

Go down to the Farm and check out their handiwork…very cool indeed.

Beautiful faces…
A good time was had by all!


Onions get lined up for planting…



Taking notes from Farmer Jane…

There’s was planting to do but then the real fun began…

Time to Build the S-C-A-R-E-C-R-O-W !!!!

Everybody pitched in…newspaper arms and legs…straw hands and very cool farmer overalls!  Each child got to “design” the scarecrow’s face… and she’s a real beauty!

Farmer Jane was heard saying: “These kiddoes are the bestest helpers!”

Now, the Children’s scarecrow needs a name….”Scary Miss who?”

In go the Seedlings…

Week two in the Children’s Garden was very exciting!  Cauliflower, broccoli, kale and lettuce were planted by the young Farmers… snuggled into the soil and watered with care.

Checking for root crowding…



Sometimes the roots get stuck…
Your hands have to get in the soil!






Everyone was helping out…




Watering with care…


Digging a hole deep enough…
With a little help from Mom…








Farmer Jane and helpers Hillary and Paul are thrilled with their group of young Farmers!  Even the weeding lesson was fun!

Getting after those pesky weeds…

The Children are more than willing to do what it takes to get their veggies growing… now on to next week’s lesson in trimming and pruning.  With a bit of help from the rain predicted this week, the children should see some of last week’s seeds popping through the soil!  Fingers crossed! 

Field Trip to Evergreen Tree Company…

Evergreen’s Larry Simpson made good on his promise to let the children join him in the cab of his monster-sized wood chipper!

Waiting for the “chipper man”….
While the Moms watched their kids in the chipper-cab…
Under Paul’s watchful eye….

So much fun! All returned safe and sound….and much wiser about recycling trees and wood. Thanks, Larry!

We’re Baaaccckkk….

After having the long, hot summer off, the Children’s Program has re-started and is going strong at the Farm!  The cool morning weather was perfect for the first day of the Fall Season!

Everybody had a job to do.

Coordinator, Jane Kollmann had the plots composted with all the rows in order so when the kids arrived today, they were able to plant their fall crops first thing.  These new Farmers worked the soil, planted their seeds and tamped down the rows before laying mulch as a cover for protection and moisture retention.  Jane’s helpers, Hillary Hughes and Paul Pittsford made the learning lots of fun…for the children and their parents!

Farming is a family affair…


Tamping down the seeds.

Green beans, radishes, beets, lettuce, carrots, cilantro and snow peas should be popping their green heads up through the soil in a few days….so next week, it’s trimming and weeding lessons for the group!   

A young Farmer sows his first crop.


Marking out the rows.








The day ended with a special field trip to our next-door neighbors, Evergreen Tree Company.  Owner, Larry Simpson gave the children a special tour of the wood chipper machine….and promised them a “ride” in the cab next weekend when he’s chipping the tree trunks again!

Larry Simpson has their attention!
How cool was this!

The Last Harvest for the Spring Program…

Farmer Charlie has been shouldering the Children’s Garden like the trooper he is these past couple weeks.  His work has paid off with this latest harvest of cucumbers, beets, tomatoes and carrots.   It was a very wet day at the Farm after all the rain, and cleaning up was just as wet… but so very necessary!

Muddy feet get a bath!
“Mr. Harvester”

The summer’s ’round the corner….and so is the Buckwheat cover crop that will be growing in the Children’s Garden in July and August.  Buckwheat is a great helper with getting nitrogen into the roots of the new plants that will be sown by the Children during the Fall Program.


Contact Coordinator, Jane Kollmann at gardenher52@aol.com to sign up for the Fall.  It promises to be another cornucopia of cool weather plants, great weather and lots of good clean fun for the kids!







Still harvesting!

It’s been a good spring harvest so far….but this week found the Children’s Garden bursting with vegetables to be picked…even after the Kudzu bugs had taken their share of the pole beans!  Farmer Jane and her helpers, Jan and Hillary,organized the harveting of the beans, carrots, squash, tomatoes, beets and strawberries.  Bucketfuls later, a proud young Farmer got the veggies ready for donation to the Second Harvest Charity.

It was a bountiful day in the Farm!  Congrats to these young Farmers …and their dedicated helpers too!!

A young Farmer Checks the Garden after his Bike Ride…

What a dedicated Farmer this guy is!  He and his Mom travelled to the Farm this weekend on their bikes….checked out the tomatoes and the newly planted zinnias…just to make sure that all is well!  Impressive! 

It’s Potato Harvesting Time!

A small, hard-working crew turned out this week to harvest the rows of new potatoes…pounds and pounds of them! 

These Farmers made the harvesting look easy!

The potatoes were brought home, washed and piled high for this shot…not bad for just two rows of pototoe plants!   Next week the tomatoes should be getting ready for picking!

Look at these beauties!


Harvesting Peas (and a few weeds)…

Farmer Jane Kollmann and her merry band of helpers led the way this past weekend with yet another great harvest of veggies in the Children’s Garden.  Peas, radishes and lettuces were the produce the children gathered up.  The tomatoes and the potatoes are not far away from being ready to pick…and or course more strawberries!

A family affair…one young Farmer gets a helping hand from his Mom!


Farmer Hillary is a loyal helper in the Children’s Garden…


A star gardener and his Mom!


Farmer Jane picking peas…


The Happy Team enjoys the harvest!


Hard at Work!

It’s mid-season and there’s weeds to pull and plants to harvest. The children are working their compost pile every time they harvest any veggies…it will provide good soil supplements come planting time in the Fall!

Romaine lettuce all picked…bagged…and ready to be donated to Second Harvest!


It’s Harvest Time!

All this harvest will be used for the Mission Fundraiser at the Methodist Church this weekend.  What a wonderful way to share the bounty from Skidaway Farms!

Between harvesting radishes and mixed greens…plus working the compost pile to keep it decomposing garden refuse…this young Farmer was a busy guy!

What a busy day we had!

The children are in full-swing now with an early harvest of strawberries!  Squash seeds were planted…radishes and beets were thinned to make room for growth…and the nasturiums were feed to keep them going strong.  The children were joined by Moms…and Jane and her helpers…and even a grandmother or two!

Just Checking…

Several children stopped by the Farm yesterday to see how their plants are faring.  The snow peas had germinated overnight!  The strawberries are beginning to turn a soft shade of red!  And the potatoes continue to grow higher!

The Children’s Garden is alive and doing so very well!   It may be time to protect the strawberries from those pesky birds that love to nibble ripe berries… all in a day’s work at the Farm!

A perfect Saturday morning…

Great news!  The potatoes are popping up through the mulch!

…potatoes are just two weeks old.


It was a good day to plant tomatoes as well.  The children dug down deep enough to cover the roots….then covered the base of the plants with mulch to keep them warm and protected while they settle into the soil at the Farm.

Strawberries, potatoes, broccoli, onions, lettuce and tomatoes are all doing well in the Children’s Garden.   It won’t be long now!

…potting pails ready to go…

 Victory against the Gnats!

Wednesday afternoon’s perfect weather brought out the SAND GNATS  !!!!

But the children pressed on and won the battle to get all the cool season seeds in the ground.

Deciding where to put the onions…
Seeds were handed out…

Coordinator-Farmer, Miss Jane shows how deep those onions need to go in the ground.

Lining up the onion sets…

Everyone had to keep moving to ward off the gnats…

But when all was done, the children were victorious!

The “Sprouts” gang at the Farm…



The Spring 2012 Children’s Garden is underway!

The brisk air in late February was no deterrent for our brigade of first-time Farmers in the Children’s Garden.  These kids couldn’t wait to get their hands in the soft composted soil and plant their very-first-time-ever crop of vegetables.

This Farmer was keen on getting those potatoes into the soil!


These root potatoes, broccoli and lettuce plants could not have been more appreciated than they were by this merry band of gardeners.  Coordinator, Jane Kollmann and her stable of willing assistants got things off to a brilliant start and soon rows of potatoes were staked; broccoli and lettuce were lovingly mulched to perfection and the watering cans were at work along the rows of plants.

Rows of potatoes are ready for mulching…to keep the plants warm…

The children will meet at the Farm twice a week until it’s harvest time.  Then their produce will be donated to Second Harvest to help those in need in Chatham County.

Bright colors and a sunny day make planting much more fun!

In the meantime, the children are having a great time!  No doubt, harvest time can’t come too soon for these new Farmers!

Want information about joining this program?  Contact Skidaway Farms’ Children’s Coordinator, Jane Kollman at 912.349-1395.