Members of the local Awesome Adventurers 4-H Club will team up with senior citizens Sunday to plant seeds in a new vegetable garden plot at the Hollin Hall Senior Center in honor of Grandparents Week.
Grandparents Week runs from Sept. 8-16 this year. The 4-H event will take place from 3 to 5 p.m. Sunday at the center, located at 1500 Shenandoah Rd.
Participants will help mix soil in a raised garden plot, plant seeds and paint rain barrels. The 4-H club recently added the raised bed, which includes a seat around the edge so seniors can garden without having to kneel, with the help of a $1,000 grant from Generations United and the MetLife Foundation, said club leader Cheryl Fuentes.
“The seed event is a great opportunity for grandparents and grandchildren to come out in celebration of Grandparents Week, to take part in a healthy, outdoor, interactive activity,” Fuentes said.
“We’ll have some rain barrels they can paint. … They can plant seeds, and we plan to tell folks about services at the senior center, if they’re not involved in the senior center, and more about the 4-H club and about the Generations United project.”
The 4-H club meets once or twice a month at the senior center and has been active for about a year and a half. Most of the children in the club are in fifth through ninth grade, Fuentes said.
The club focuses on activities picked by the children themselves, Fuentes said, predominately sports, health and nutrition projects. This year, the club is focusing on gardening. Through the grant, the 4-H members are growing and harvesting vegetables and then using the harvest to prepare dinners with seniors from the center to enjoy before their monthly dances.
The club began its first vegetable garden plot at the center last spring. The children recently completed the second, raised bed, and they plan to construct one or two additional garden beds, Fuentes said. A master gardener at the center is assisting the club members, who just planted spinach and radishes, crops that do well in the fall.
“We’ve learned that you can grow things almost year round in this area, so we’ll see how it goes,” Fuentes said.
On Sunday, participants will receive seed packets donated by the American Horticultural Society. They have the choice of planting in the senior center garden or taking home the packets to plant in their own backyards.
For more information, contact club leaders at mountvernon4H@gmail.com.