Garden to Table for Gourmet Pizzas

The young gardeners at Haumoana School spotted an opportunity when the local gourmet pizza restaurant was struggling to find a regular supply of rocket. They got planting! Read their Garden to Table journey so far.

The Garden to Table Programme has arrived at Haumoana School in Hawkes Bay and the children and staff have relished the opportunity to make the most of our wonderful local growing environment. Haumoana School is situated amongst orchards, vineyard and other crops. This means the school is in prime growing country which great news for our many young gardeners who are now getting their hands into the soil as our planned garden beds have now been built.

The support of product from Tui Products has helped us prime and feed the soil in our new gardens and also help get our seedlings off to a strong start.

Haumoana School‘s Garden to Table programme is in its early years and currently involves the Year 4 pupils. Mrs Ailsa Slui is our Gardening Specialist and Mr Jon Lovell, a Year 4 teacher at school and “foodie at heart”, has led the way with the cooking and kitchen side of things. We enjoy the wide-support of a group of keen and enthusiastic parent volunteers.

Our Garden to Table programme has been running successfully up until now with fairly limited facilities and some good old “Kiwi can-do”. Herb gardens were initially planted to get things started and rocket and basil pesto, herb muffins and other goodies were created as the herbs grew. Mushrooms growing on the field were turned into soup and in autumn feijoas were reinvented as salsa. Our new expanded gardens and the recent planting of rhubarb, fruit trees, currants and seasonal vegetables will set us up well for spring and summer.

Haumoana School is passionate about providing the best possible opportunities for all learners and our great community have swung into action and raised funds to convert our old dental clinic into a purpose built kitchen with outdoor dining facilities so we can prepare and share garden harvests as part of the everyday curriculum. Our new gardens have been planted right next to our future kitchen for the ultimate garden to table experience.

Enterprising Young Growers

Our enterprising young gardeners spotted an opportunity when it was discovered the local gourmet pizza restaurant was struggling to find a regular supply of rocket. Our fabulous teacher also spotted a rich and genuine learning experience. The class set out investigating the world of growing with purpose to meet a demand.

The restaurant owner was invited into the class and was most impressed with Room 4’s current rocket crop. She discussed the quality and quantity of the product they would need and set them a challenge of becoming their 2017 rocket supplier.

After some inquiry and investigation Room 4 used the very small garden beds out the back of the school, sprouted rocket seeds, got planting and began a weekly supply until the growing season stopped. Hawke’s Bay frosts (almost always followed by a sunny day) presented a challenge to overcome as did the huge demand. Koha received was re-invested and valuable lessons learnt regarding cost and profit.
Those enjoying their rocket on pizzas in Hawkes Bay this year – it was probably grown with love and care and packaged with pride by Room 4, Haumoana School.

Watch this space as we move from punnet to garden, recipe to recipe and from strength to strength!

Tui & Garden to Table

We are excited to be supporting Garden To Table as our school programme again this year. Garden to Table is a trust, which runs a gardening and cooking programme in schools across New Zealand. As participants in the Garden to Table programme, seven to 10 year-old children spend time in a productive vege garden and home-style kitchen each week. There they learn skills that will last them a lifetime, and discover just how much fun it is to grow and cook their own seasonal vegetables and fruits.

Tui is providing starter packs to each of the new schools, and seasonal packs during the year.

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Garden to Table for Gourmet Pizzas Comments

  • It is so much to learn an grow your own veges you love to eat and enjoy the goodness of it.

    Pavinder Bhogal