Supreme parsley takes the win

Monday, October 30, 2023

Laggan Public School in New South Wales is proud to be part of the Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Program, and is celebrating 10 years of membership this month!

Students just love getting into the garden, to plant and grow their produce, and then use the fresh produce in the kitchen.

– Bronwyn Haynes, Kitchen Garden Program teacher, Laggan Public School

Program teacher Bronwyn Haynes, or ‘Farmer Bron’ as the students have nicknamed her, has a career background in horticulture and hospitality and shares this experience on a weekly basis.

“I am thrilled to be able to give the students a lifelong skill of gardening and cooking. I jumped at the chance to evolve and grow the vegetable patch into a valuable resource for the school and greater community,” Bronwyn said.

Bronwyn is the founding member of the close-by Crookwell Community Garden and has helped evolve this space into a valuable resource used by the local community.

Whenever Farmer Bron walks into the classroom on a cooking day, the students all want to know what they are cooking that day – with great excitement! The students are keeping a garden and kitchen journal and add to this their weekly lessons and recipes.

“With the Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Program, we have access to endless resources which makes the presentation of lessons very easy. The program is comprehensive and current with seasonal trends,” explains Bronwyn.

The program is funded primarily through the school, but the students also fundraise by selling their fresh home-baked goods, preserves and school-grown plants. Farmer Bron donates voluntary time to the garden patch, as well as plants, seeds, and materials for lessons.

Earlier this year, the students entered the local agricultural show and came away with a swag of awards for freshly grown produce and homemade cooking. This achievement was a combined effort with each student receiving an award and the school’s parsley being judged supreme exhibit!

The students range in age from Kindergarten to Year 6, and the lessons cover all aspects of horticulture and food science, with the kitchen garden sessions given twice weekly. The school has recently been successful in grant funding to purchase a large polytunnel which will enable them to extend their lesson topics to include propagation, soil health, temperature control, growth rates of plants, and data recording. Farmer Bron’s vision for the program is to arm her students with life-long skills in both the garden and kitchen, and to encourage them to take these skills home to their parents and family members. The final word from Farmer Bron is to get involved with the Kitchen Garden Program and use the many resources offered:

“Help your students set and reach goals and make your lessons fun and interesting. Give your students a journal to collect recipes, helpful information, and to record their lessons data.”


Read our story about ag shows to find out more about Laggan’s prize winners!

Find out more about Kitchen Garden Program memberships by visiting the membership page.

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