Bandera High School FFA students Chelsea Graves and Kate Guajardo thought it was the perfect time this year to reintroduce Bandera to organic vegetable gardening.
As members of the FFA, students are required to participate in a senior service project. Graves and Guajardo selected organic gardening.
After receiving a grant from the Bandera Independent School District Education Foundation to install three raised vegetable beds at Bandera Middle School, Graves and Guajardo began their garden during this year’s 2020 Spring Break.
They used donations of soil as a base for their project. Some of the organic vegetables grown for sale includes summer squash, three types of tomatoes, bell peppers, serrano and jalapeno peppers, cucumbers, and basil.
Their fervor for the project was evidenced by the enthusiasm in Graves’ voice when she spoke about using cedar chip mulch to ward off garden pests, which eliminates the need for chemical pest control.
The two students were used to working together on a project. They won first place in one of the categories of the National FFA Agriscience Fair last year on a project called “Jumping the String: A Comparison Study of the Speed of Sound Versus Arrow Flight Time.”
The gardeners are using profits from the sale of their produce, fresh salsa and zucchini bread to fund scholarships for senior FFA students at Bandera High.
“We just wanted to give back to the community through our garden,” Graves stated.
While the sale of the students’ produce every other Saturday has been located at Bandera Middle School so far, the gardeners will move to Bandera’s Tractor Supply store on Saturday, July 4.
“We hope to see a whole different set of people at the Tractor Supply,” said Guajardo. The Future Farmers of Amer
The Future Farmers of America strives to develop competent, aggressive agricultural leaders, develop an awareness of the global importance of agriculture and its contribution to our wellbeing, strengthen the confidence of agriculture students in themselves and their work, promote the intelligent choice and establishment of an agriculture career, improve the economic, environmental, recreational and human resources in the community and accomplish other goals for agricultural students.
Students starting as early as the seventh grade who are enrolled in an agriculture course may qualify for membership in Bandera ISD’s FFA.
For more information about the FFA, go to www.banderaisd. net and click on the links Bandera High School, then Students, then Handbooks or contact Chapter Sponsor Fulton Pizzini at firstname.lastname@example.org.