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Garden club blooms at COCC

Spring is an exciting time. The weather is getting warmer, the birds return north and the green thumbs gather together to transplant starter plants and ideas.

Lauren Hamlin
The Broadside

Spring is an exciting time. The weather is getting warmer, the birds return north and the green thumbs gather together to transplant starter plants and ideas.
On April 12, Central Oregon Community College Garden Club had their first meeting of the spring term, led by club member Victoria Odinet, to discuss plans of future projects and get a lesson in plant transplanting.
Garden Club was founded by club President Lisa Barnett fall term 2011 and started meeting in winter term 2012. Odinet attended the first meeting after seeing a flier for the Garden Club and wanting to learn more about gardening.
“It’s fun in here. We get dirty and we get to eat lunch together, it’s great,” said Odinet.
During the meeting, members discussed plans for Earth day and working with others on campus, including the Native American Club, Latino Club and Sustainability Club.
“Being a new club we really want to support other clubs already on campus,” said Odinet. “Creating a community is part of what we want to do.”
Garden Club meetings also feature gardening information and techniques taught by Master Garderner Karen Roth. During this meeting, Roth showed club members how to safely transplant starters they had planted during a prior meeting into bigger pots.

Sean Mueller and Angela Moss work together to plant some Bazel in starter cups for the Garden Club (Derek Oldham | The Broadside)

“Once they (plants) have four to six new ‘true’ leaves, then we can transplant them,” said Roth as she demonstrated transplanting several starter plants. “After transplanting…as soon as early may, these can go into a garden.”

The meeting had an overall relaxed feel to it, putting no pressure on members to be perfect at gardening, which is one of the club’s goals.
“We want to create an environment where people don’t feel they have to be a master gardener,” said Odinet.
Not all current club members came to the club as experts either.
“I was always scared to garden because I thought everything was going to die on me,” said Damaris Monroy, COCC student and Garden club member. “Now I’m not scared to garden anymore.”
Thanks to the Garden Club, Monroy now sees gardening in a different light.
“Gardening is something I’m going to pursue and plan to do for the rest of my life,” she said. “I’m really thankful for the garden club because it’s going to teach me a lot.”
Another big goal of Garden Club is bringing a community garden to the COCC campus.
“At the first meeting, we talked about how important and beneficial it would be to have a community garden on campus,” said Odinet. “That’s been our goal the entire time, in addition to having a place where people can come and learn, is having a garden on campus. That’d be amazing.”
The club submitted a proposal for a garden to either be near COCC’s Library or Cascades Culinary Institute. Plans for the garden include collecting compost from CCI’s restaurant and COCC’s cafeteria, and having teachers incorporate lessons with the garden as a medium.
“We have several teachers on board who are developing lesson plans where they can teach in the garden,” said Odinet. “[Lesson plans] are to support the garden. The more lessons plans we get, the more it will help with everything.”
With the lesson plans and all the uses they will have for a community garden on campus, club members won’t give up in their pursuit.
If the proposal for the garden isn’t accepted, “we’ll keep submitting and changing the proposal until it gets accepted,” said Odinet. “We’re determined and not going to give up”
Garden Club meets every other Thursday from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m.




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