Keiki O Lanai Preschoolers are getting an early start in learning about sustainability. With the help of Pulama Lanai, parent volunteers and community members, the children constructed and planted a garden complex to grow their own fruits, veggies and flowers.
The children are exploring the concepts and methods of gardening that allow them to do their part to care for the environment. But the preschoolers are becoming well aware of the responsibility and attentiveness required to tend a garden.
Every day, the students water their plants and pull weeds, an activity they have learned to look forward to and enjoy.
Cultivating taro and pineapple
In their class, the preschoolers learned the story of Haloa, the taro plant that is the believed to be the ancestor of the Hawaiian people. Each child planted their own individual dry land taro plant, which they are responsible for. Once the plant reaches maturity, students will have the opportunity to harvest their taro and prepare poi.
Lanai’s little farmers are growing green onion and pineapple to harvest, as well as a few ornamental plants like Spanish moss and air plants.
Their gardening lessons give them insight into sustainability and organic growing methods. They also gain valuable life lessons as they begin to foster a deep appreciation for the environment.
Community donations bring garden to life
Aunty Susu Woolsey, grandparent and volunteer at Keiki O Lanai, shared how grateful she and the students are to everyone who gave their time, effort, and materials.
All of the tires that are utilized in their garden are recycled from the Fleet Maintenance Yard. They were painted and transformed into planters that depict a few of their favorite animated characters. The garden is fertilized with compost of eggshells and fallen leaves.
If you would like to donate to Keiki O Lanai’s garden project, please contact Aunty Susu at (808) 563-9359. The preschool is accepting donations of edible plants, compost including eggshells, and gardening equipment and tools.