Monday, November 17, 2014

4 Ideas for Making Abbot More Beautiful

It may be snowing but Molly Mason, chair of the Abbot Grounds Beautification committee, never rests. She's already thinking ahead to next spring and recently proposed four possible ideas for how the committee could work for positive changes in the appearance of our school.

Which ideas appeal to you? Please consider joining the committee and helping us with this work.

1) A Green Garden
Molly went to an event put on by the Agrarian Adventure http://www.agrarianadventure.org/. They’re a group of students, teachers and parents who are committed to the farm-to-school movement. Kids of all grades are getting involved in the creation of gardens; including tending, harvesting and providing produce from their gardens to their schools.

She is very interested in creating a greens garden at Abbot. The school has a nice sloping south-facing area right by the library—a micro climate really. "I think it would be a great place to put raised beds with small hoops," she said. "There are literally a million gardeners in this area so we would have access to tons of additional resources. I’m in touch with the coordinator of the program who is a teacher at King Elementary. I’m going to be working with her to get a plan together."

2) A Nicer Kindergarten Line-up Area

The area outside of the Kindergarten centrum where our youngest students line up in the morning could use a shielded seating/waiting area. There also is a paved area just to the left of that sidewalk that could use a plan. "I was thinking we could put fairy gardens in there or something," Molly said. "I welcome design input here and have contacted my landscape architect to come and have a look (for free) and give me some direction."

3) Weed Removal for the Back Parking Lot

The area around the back parking lot is overgrown and full of invasive species such as Buckthorn and honeysuckle. Removing this and starting over with native plants is a huge undertaking. "I’d need several parent volunteers to help at least get that project started," Molly said. "That would be a multi-stage project and we’d need some help and support making it into a curriculum-relevant undertaking where the students could learn about invasive plants, native plants and proper disposal of the waste.

4) An Art Garden

"The art room courtyard has paving stones and a large wall so somebody somewhere along the way had a few great ideas about bringing the art room outdoors as much as possible," Molly said. "The problem is that the pavers are framed by posts that are in an awkward layout and are terrible tripping hazards. There are overgrown barberry shrubs and weeds galore. There’s a great large wall that would be perfect for a mural of tiles or some other weather-resistant material. We just need a plan. It would be great to have ample seating out there in the form of picnic tables."

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