The cabbages were planted on Jan. 19, each child selecting and naming their own plant. Each student has a check-off care calendar, which teaches them responsibilities about gardening. The list requires the children to water, weed, fertilize and check for bugs on their plant. The excitement generated from watching their plants grow is astonishing. Beginning with one scraggly plant, each cabbage is now about three feet wide and growing. One cabbage even has two heads. The program not only teaches responsibility but also that working in a garden can be fun and rewarding.
Last year, 1.5 million third-graders in 45 states participated in the program, sponsored by Alabama wholesale grower Bonnie Plants. The “Bonnie’s 3rd Grade Cabbage Program” includes instructions on how to grow the cabbage, care for it and enter the state contest. The class will pick one winner, based on the size of the cabbage and the general appearance. Once a class winner is selected, a photo of the student with his winning cabbage will be mailed to Bonnie Plants in Alabama prior to the deadline date of Sept. 10. A contest winner will be chosen from each participating state. Bonnie Plants will give to the winning student a $1,000 scholarship (savings bond).
For more information on the Bonnie’s 3rd Grade Cabbage Program visit www.bonnieplants.com.