Kids in Wellesley reaped the rewards of their hard work over the summer as the Wellesley Horticultural Society handed out its junior gardener awards this week.
“We had 20 junior gardeners this year, and for a year where we hadn’t had it for a few years, that’s great,” said society member Anne Koch.
“To be interested in gardening from a young age is beneficial because, first of all, they can assist their parents. To go from garden to table and to see where our food actually comes from is so wonderful for them,” said Koch.
“And for the horticulture society to have junior gardeners is a bonus because it grows our membership too, because we have an aging population amongst the horticulture society.”
Winners for each age group included Atticus McCormick, (Grades 1-4,) Georgina McKormic (Grades 5-6) and Tamara Nenadov (Grades 7-10).
The junior gardeners have become more creative over the years the program has been running, Koch said.
“We had keen gardeners that were in higher grades that were planting things that they wanted for their parents, like they would do pickled beets with their dad or something like that. That’s why [we didn’t] put parameters on what kind of garden they can have,” she said.
Having a garden teaches kids that their efforts pays off with results, Koch added.
“If you weed from when the plants are young, if you take the weeds away when they’re little then, you can keep the weeds away better. And then a year like this if you didn’t water, some of the things didn’t happen,” she said by way of example.
At the same meeting Monday night in Wellesley, society member Suzanne Culp was named the society’s garden hero of the year.
“I’m very honoured that people nominated me to be the gardener of the year. I’ve gardened for a long time. Well, I’ve been gardening most of my adult life,” Culp said.
“We start early in the spring with growing little seeds, and we’re at it until November usually.”
Culp said she loved the enthusiasm of the kids who grew their own gardens
“The best part is going to different homes like country homes and town homes seeing the families work together and creating this garden. It just makes you love living in Wellesley.”