Douglas County’s agricultural past has found expression at many of the elementary schools in the form of gardens, but the growing season seldom coincides with school.
But thanks to the work of a Jacks Valley resident, students will be able to tend their garden through the winter.
A greenhouse was dedicated last week at the school that was built in part by resident Ron Gilder, a grandfather of one of the students, who volunteered at the school, working in the garden.
“He really pushed for the greenhouse,” teacher Carol Kamholz said. “We got a grant from the Ed Foundation a year ago, and it has taken this long to complete it. Ron got to see it before he died in July.”
Gilder had cancer, and worked the last four years on the garden and the greenhouse.
A bench in the garden and a stone with Gilder’s name engraved on it will help preserve the memory of the work he did on the garden.
The Jacks Valley garden has been in place for a few years, and is located behind the habitat on the east side of the school.
“A lot of our families didn’t even know we had a garden,” Kamholz said. “We’re hoping this fall to get shelves installed and paint the inside.
The greenhouse is 100 feet square and cost $2,500 to build.
A group from Life Point Church helped put the greenhouse together. It’s built using old barn wood, and features what Kamholz called a Mr. Ed door with an upper and lower half.