Sooke Elementary kindergarteners Charlotte Thorne (front left) and Grayson Purvis and expanding the native plant garden on their school property thanks to the help of Gr. 5 student Jace Ferris (back left), Gr. 4/5 teacher Marion Stupich and Kindergarten teacher Lisa Maria Schlosser. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)

Sooke Elementary kindergarteners Charlotte Thorne (front left) and Grayson Purvis and expanding the native plant garden on their school property thanks to the help of Gr. 5 student Jace Ferris (back left), Gr. 4/5 teacher Marion Stupich and Kindergarten teacher Lisa Maria Schlosser. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)

Sooke Elementary plants native plant garden with help from community

Sooke Elementary teachers, students expand backyard garden

They say every plant starts with a seed, but that’s all it took for Sooke Elementary librarian Liz Stannard to realize the opportunity to grow their school’s garden.

Since the beginning of June, Stannard and kindergarten teacher Lisa Maria Schlosser have been building a garden behind Sooke Elementary, located along Highway 14.

It’s a space that most would regard as a pocket garden of sorts, with a 20-by-5-foot area at the edge of the school field. But when school staff heard that the Vancouver Island Regional Library would be building a new two-storey library along Wadams Way, they saw a chance to grow beyond their borders.

Stannard reached out to the District of Sooke and received permission to take native species from the property before construction began. She and Schlosser were able to get their hands on sword ferns, salal, Oregon grape and ocean spray.

READ MORE: Sooke Secret Garden Tour goes virtual

Now, they’re expanding the garden into a small corner of the school property with a large cedar tree as cover. On most school mornings, she’ll hand her students with a plastic shovel and give them the chance to learn how to transplant new species into their garden.

“We wanted to do more hands-on activities for the kids, and this is perfect for that,” said Schlosser, who admits she’s a passionate gardener.

“We, as teachers, could have done this ourselves in no time, but this gives a chance for our students to feel like they’ve accomplished something themselves while spending time outdoors.”

They’ve had help from the district and community members who’ve given their extra native plants, wooden benches from a teacher’s family, and mulch from Sooke Soil and Landscape.

ALSO READ: Food security initiative encourages Sooke residents to grow food at home


 

Do you have a story tip? Email: vnc.editorial@blackpress.ca.

Follow us on Twitter and Instagram, and like us on Facebook.

gardeningsooke school district

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Activists from the Fairy Creek Blockades hold the injunction application notice which was submitted by logging company Teal Jones to the B.C. Supreme Court. The application, which asks to have blockaders removed from the sites that stop access to cut blocks, is set to be heard on March 4. (Photo contributed/Joshua Wright)
Activists hunker down to protect Fairy Creek near Port Renfrew from logging

Forest company Teal Cedar applies for injunction to remove seven-month-old blockades

The application proposing to rezone Western Speedway was passed by Langford’s planning, zoning and affordable housing committee Feb 8. A petition has since been started by residents of Trudie Terrace, hoping to stop the proposed residential portion of the development plan. (CBRE Victoria)
Petition opposing Western Speedway development proposal gains steam

Save Thetis Heights Neighborhood petition aims to stop extension of Trudie Terrace

The City of Victoria filed a petition with the Supreme Court of B.C. March 2 to have it clarify whether, under the Trustee Act, Beacon Hill Park can be used for temporary sheltering. (Black Press Media file photo)
Victoria asks court to clarify if Beacon Hill Park can be used for sheltering

City of Victoria filed petition to Supreme Court of B.C. March 2

Boma Brown won the Emerging Leader Award for her work founding the Support Network for Indigenous Women and Women of Colour. (Courtesy of Boma Brown)
Victoria SNIWWOC founder up for national women’s award for volunteer efforts

Victoria’s Boma Brown is a semi-finalist in the running for the L’Oreal Paris Women of Worth award

Older rental apartments are prime candidates for renovations, and could result in lost affordable housing stock. (Zoë Ducklow photo)
B.C.’s renoviction overhaul a good start, but won’t preserve affordable stock, lawyer says

And still no protection for people who can’t pay rent due to COVID-19

(Photo by Marissa Baecker/Shoot the Breeze)
B.C. WHL teams to hit the ice with Kelowna, Kamloops hub cities

Kelowna, Kamloops centres chosen to host B.C. WHL teams for 24-game regular season

.
LETTER: Anti-semitism definition lacking

Re: We must identify anti-Semitism and combat it (Online, Feb. 26) I… Continue reading

The victim of the homicide on Cowichan Lake Road early Monday morning was 17 years old, and was stabbed in the incident. (File photo)
Duncan homicide victim was 17 years old

RCMP report that teenager was stabbed

(File photo)
RCMP arrest man after report of gun-toting threat-maker near Parksville schools

43-year-old man taken into custody; students at nearby schools were asked to stay inside

The machines are akin to ATMs and allow drug users at risk of overdose to get hydromorphone pills dispensed to them after their palm has been scanned to identify its unique vein pattern. (CANADIAN PRESS)
Feds dole out $3.5M for ‘vending machines’ to dispense safer opioids in B.C.

The machines are located in four cities across Canada, including Vancouver and Victoria

Kelowna’s lakefront visitor centre is one of 130 around the province. Tourism businesses have been hardest hit by COVID-19 restrictions on travel. (Destination B.C.)
Tourism, small business getting COVID-19 help, B.C. minister says

$300M grant program has delivered $50 million so far

Most Read