Thursday, July 9, 2020

Mahi māra Term 2 2020

Term 2 started with the whole of the country in lockdown due to the Covid 19
The school holidays had been brought forward and all of the planning and mahi
for that time had to be put on hold….. Although the country stopped
(with the exception of the amazing essential workers)
PLANTS/GARDENS DON’T STOP GROWING!  A bonus, we were lucky
to have had the beautiful weather that we did during this time.
Just before the restrictions were lifted, we were able to get back into the mara. 
The unwanted plants (weeds) had started to take over.  There were still kumara
and pumpkin to harvest and the seeds that were sown during the lockdown for our
winter crops, had grown into beautiful seedlings and needed to be planted out. 
It was a busy time with weeding, harvesting, planting and deciding the best way
to deal with our old plant material.

Broccoli, spinach and beetroot seedlings.
From seeds sown during the lockdown.  
When the tamariki came back to Yendarra, our sessions in the mara were organised
a bit different.  They adapted so well to it.  Our focus for the term was how we could
use this older plant material and that was by making compost and some of
the different composting methods available to us….
We talked about what can be used to make a good compost. 
You need ‘browns’…. small sticks, dead leaves, shredded paper and cardboard
and ‘greens’ …. fruit and vegetable scraps and chopped up plant material, to name
a few, plus temperature, moisture and time.  
Methods for making the compost include, trenching, where you dig a hole,
place the material in it and cover it back up with the soil.  It’s a quick and easy
way of composting and one of the only ways of getting rid of meat scraps
and dairy products.  
The boys digging a hole/tenching
Material is put in the hole and covered over 

Our compost bins have been well used since the mara and wharekai were
developed, and the recent addition of another two has enabled us to
make so much more needed compost.  Material – browns and greens are
piled up and over time compost is created…

…and directly on top of the garden bed.  Although it puts an area out of action for a
little while, and can look a bit messy, there will be beautiful compost made directly on
the bed and ready for planting in the spring/early summer.  The finished crops from
the previous summer … corn, kumara, tomatoes and the various pumpkins and
squash have been chopped up small, and the fallen leaves that have dropped
throughout the school grounds and picked up by Ms Baker and Ms Filipo have been
added to the bed. 
As well as some cardboard and horse manure...… Watch this space.