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Academy’s Greenhouse: Saving the Environment, One Pepper at a Time

Pepper-growing competition.(Courtesy/Maren Lawrence23)

Academy’s  greenhouse is flourishing with an abundance of new plants and greens. Our Environmental Club has been hard at work tending to the greenhouse, with Mrs. Downey ensuring that everything is growing as expected.

One branch of the club has been tasked with greenhouse duties, such as planting hydroponics, growing plants for the prairie plot, and keeping the raised beds in top condition.

Mrs. Downey says “The mission of the CA greenhouse and gardens is to provide students from all divisions with a hands-on and real-time look at how food is grown.  It is a space that allows teachers to creatively explore agriculture practices and promote agricultural literacy, by introducing curriculum that highlights connections between agricultural, human health, nutrition, environment, community and sustainability.”

We have seen this mission in action with the hands-on activities like the pepper-growing contest that helps students understand more about the roots of where food comes.

This pepper-growing contest began in late fall of 2020 with students monitoring the growth of these plants throughout the winter season. As of now, the leaders of the pepper competition are Lizzy Akey and Johnny Hill. In a time where people are becoming increasingly aware of the dangers that could occur to our planet if we do not take immediate action to help our environment, the CA Greenhouse is a step in the right direction. Students and teachers are able to learn about agriculture and the environment in a hands-on setting outside of the classroom, like a breath of fresh air, both literally and figuratively. 

For a more eco-conscious, sustainable life, Downey recommends the following  because no action is too small:

  1. Use a refillable water bottle and coffee mug

  2. Bring a reusable bag when you shop. (Say no to plastic bags!)

  3. Recycle paper, plastic, glass and aluminum, especially on campus.

  4. Shop at local markets.

  5. Stay informed, and share what you are doing with friends and family. 



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