|Alice in Wonderland's garden|
When I was a child I recall my junior school having small garden plots but these being grassed over before I ever got to grow anything. My secondary school was a traditional (dare I say it snobby) grammar school and horticulture really didn't feature. We did grow some broad bean seedlings in botany and the art master had busy lizzies and red geraniums on the windowsill but just for us to draw. When finally as a failed A level student, I announced I wanted to take up horticulture for a career, there was shock and horror. The school attempted to dissuade me and did nothing to help me pursue this! Some of the following pictures show deserted gardens but as no doubt you will be aware taking pictures of kids without parental permission is a distinct 'No no!' However we did meet many kids at the schools and were always bowled over by their interest and enthusiasm.
|A flower loom|
How very different it is now. Schools, right through from nursery to secondary have gardens and encourage pupils to become involved. Many also have after school garden clubs. There are flower gardens, vegetable plots, orchards and fruit bushes. Some even have chickens or rabbits. Children are encouraged to grow, cook and eat. As well as this there are wildlife areas with ponds, meadows, bird boxes, bug hotels and bird hides. At one school each classroom had a huge rack of colourful Wellington boots as it was essential that the children should be able to go outside regardless of the weather. Makes me want to go back to school again!