Part of Bushwillow education is to create opportunities to connect with nature in a meaningful way. One of the ways we are doing is this is through the Food Forest and Gardens initiative, led by Bushwillow grandparent Tim Wigley and teacher Yvonne van Breugel. Thanks to their efforts and to the support and participation of our children and parents, our school is looking wonderful.
The emphasis of this initiative has been on teaching children about permaculture – creating natural growing conditions where nature can take care of itself. We have learned about the importance of good initial soil preparation. This entails, amongst other things, creating and maintaining ‘forest conditions’ by keeping the soil covered so that pioneer trees can take care of themselves.
Bushwillow children have planted a diversity of pollinator attracting indigenous trees. Our food forest even includes a banana circle. We have also focused on plant growing and seed propagation. In addition, each class tends to a vegetable and herb garden, while our senior class tends to a herb garden and nursery.