Sunday, June 23, 2024

Emerald Keepers Club Summer Update – New Officers, Garden Crops, and a Community Spruce-Up Event Aug. 19

Community Event - on August 19th join Emerald Keepers and the Coronado Public Library to "spruce up" the student gardens. Participants can choose to help at the middle school, high school, or both! Plan to meet at 8 am at CHS or 8:30 am at CMS, and bring sunscreen and water!

Group photo of the high school Emerald Keepers behind their sprawling pumpkin plant.

While the blazing California heat has kept some locals indoors, cranking their air conditioning, the student Emerald Keepers have been hard at work. The two school gardens, one at Coronado High and one at Coronado Middle, have blossomed under the summer sun. Members for both clubs meet bi-monthly to tend to their gardens and learn about sustainable gardening with the help of Tara Davies. Davies is the environmental librarian and an advisor to both gardens.

Tall sunflowers blossom at the middle school garden by their instructional composting sign.

Starting off the morning at Coronado Middle School (CMS), you will see the progress these hard working kids have made in their garden. Since March, this garden has gone through many renovations to get to the state it is in now: adding fresh soil to the bins, constant re-weeding, and watering their sprouts.

The CMS garden is composed of four large ground bins, each filled with something different. The first is filled with marigolds, strawberries, mint, thyme, and sage. Next to their tool shed is a bin filled with sunflowers, potatoes, squash, and Japanese melons. Their third bin is composed of large vines sporting bright red cherry tomatoes, also green vines of their honeydew and watermelon. The bin is also home to carrots and, interestingly enough, a peanut plant. The final bin is dubbed “The Salsa Garden” because this bin is filled with cilantro, peppers, and onions.

High School Emerald Keepers tend to their tomatoes.

Now the clock has struck 11:30 am and we make our journey across Sixth Street to get to Coronado High School (CHS) (the garden between Village Elementary and CHS). The high school Emerald Keepers club have welcomed new officers. Abigail Pearson, rising junior, and Dylan Berk, rising senior, have taken over presidential roles. Bailey Manion is the newly appointed vice president. Two other rising seniors, Maria Laguna and Cate Gregory, will take over secretary and treasurer roles for the club. Finally, Charlotte Kuite, rising junior, is filling the role of historian.

Kuite shares, “I wanted to be an officer at CHS Emerald Keepers club because I wanted to get more involved by spreading the word about Emerald Keepers so that more people are willing to make a change.”

Tara Davies and a student Emerald Keeper examine the roots of their garden’s watermelon plant.

The CHS garden is currently home to pumpkins, cucumbers, kale, watermelon, mint, strawberries, eggplant, and many tomato plants.

Club members from both schools are very excited for the upcoming school year. Kuite says, “I’m looking forward to sharing what we do at Emerald Keepers with the rest of our school. I really want to help show them that [the club] is more than just growing things, but that we are having a great time together while helping our planet be healthier.”

Finally, after tending to the garden and making some beautification efforts, the members take a shade break and discuss the upcoming events for the club. On August 19th, community members will be invited to join Emerald Keepers and the Coronado Public Library to “spruce up” the student gardens. Participants can choose to help at the middle school, high school, or both! Plan to meet at 8 am at CHS or 8:30 am at CMS, and bring sunscreen and water!

Maria Laguna
Maria Laguna
Maria Laguna is student at Coronado High School and has lived in San Diego her whole life. She is an officer to numerous clubs on campus, including: Feminist Club, Creative Writing Club, and Activism Book Club. Maria is also very involved with community service. Her passions include fashion, reading, writing, and travel. She shows her love of literature by being a Coronado Public Library volunteer in her free time and working on her own novella. She has always loved doing activities that let her express herself creatively. Maria plans to study fashion and writing after graduating from Coronado High in 2024. Have a story for The Coronado Times to cover? Send news tips or story ideas to: [email protected]

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