11 August 2008

“Meet the Spuds”

“Meet The Spuds”

This year in February Agri Aware launched a countrywide competition for primary schools entitled “Meet the Spuds”. The senior classes decided to enter it. Soon we received in the post our grow bag, our potting compost and most importantly of all our seed potatoes.
Our potatoes were planted, and watched closely until one day little green shoots appeared. Never was a plant treated with more care, it was watered carefully, not too much, not too little! It was taken out in to the sunshine, but always out of the damaging wind. Then came the day when it was moved outside to a warm sheltered spot full time.

Growing ourspud

Growing our spud

Of course while all this was going on the children were finding out all sorts of details regarding the potato, a scrapbook was started and potato menus were arriving to the school on a daily basis. One of our parents, Mr. Michael Keane came in one morning and spoke to the children about the growing and care of potatoes. We learned that a baby potato is called a “tuber”. We learned how deep to plant our tuber and why. We learned all about the dreaded blight and how to avoid it.
Then in early June the day came when we were to harvest our potatoes. This was done with great care because we did not want to damage any. The excitement was palpable when the first potato appeared!

Harvesting

Harvesting

Washing our potatoes

Washing our potatoes

Weighing our crops

Weighing our crops

These potatoes had to be washed, weighed and the results logged in to the scrapbook. We were now on the final leg of the competition. The scrapbook, which was to be submitted as part of the competition was finally finished and with the help of parent Mrs.Breda Kirwan, and past pupil Thomas Brennan, it was very fittingly bound with a machine for stitching potato bags and its cover comprised of two potato bags. Then off it went in the post and we waited for the results.
There was great excitement when we were placed as one of the ten finalists out of the 2,000 entrants countrywide. We were invited to travel to Dublin to the Botanic Gardens on June 24th for the prize-giving ceremony. The children of third and fourth classes, with their teacher Ms. Dunlea attended this ceremony. While the day was very long, they had a very enjoyable time, with a tour of the Botanic Gardens, the glass houses and some refreshments included. The childrens ‘ photograph with Minister Trevor Sargent and Mairead Lavery of Agri Aware appeared in the local papers.