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Mill Creek Garden Club follows the trail at Forest View Elementary

Mill Creek Garden Club members were thrilled to accept the invitation of Forest View teacher, Debra Strong and her Fifth Grade class for a guided tour of their Interpretive Trail and newly planted Butterfly Garden,
Mill Creek Garden Club members with Forest View teacher Debra Strong and some of her 5th grade students. Photo credit: Lila Johnson.

By Lila Johnson, Mill Creek Garden Club, Public Relations Chair.

It was a chilly, rainy June day, but Mill Creek Garden Club members were thrilled to accept the invitation of Forest View teacher, Debra Strong and her Fifth Grade class for a guided tour of their Interpretive Trail and newly planted Butterfly Garden, funded in part by our “Giving through Gardening” Grants.

We were warmly greeted in the office by Mrs. Strong, some of her students and Principal Holly Martinez. After signing in and getting our name tags, the children led the way out into the woodsy area that is their Interpretive Trail.

It was obvious they were proud of what has been accomplished; some even talked of coming back as high school students to see their artwork on the Trail.

Great progress has been made since we visited Forest View two years ago: walking trails have been cleared and barked; hand painted four-sided educational signposts that spin on rebar poles have been set into the ground; a nature-inspired, student crafted “art plank” is nestled among the trees and the children’s outdoor art can been seen at every turn.

A modern twist: the students use iPads to scan bar codes for lessons on the flora and fauna on their Trail. Nature and technology in collaboration!

The students guided us to the Butterfly Garden set in a sunny location at the top of a slope, not far from their classroom: it contains flat stones for sunning and over a dozen nectar and host plants needed to attract butterflies. The rain was not conducive to flutterbys, but we were told a deer had been spotted in the wooded area the day before.

Our thoughts of the project: impressive, educational, amazingly utilizes their wooded site, teaches a love of nature and a respect for property by giving a sense ownership to each child, it is a “legacy” project.

To the parents and teacher of the Fifth Graders who led our tour: You should be proud of your kids; they displayed gracious manners, good knowledge and wonderful enthusiasm.

To those in the community who support our fundraising: We wish you could have toured with us; you should feel very good about Mill Creek Garden Club’s “Giving through Gardening” Grants.

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