Good Things Grow: Valley district plants orchard for students - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

Good Things Grow: Valley district plants orchard for students

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PHOENIX (KSAZ) -

The Roosevelt School District is taking the classroom outdoors in the form of a community garden and orchard. The assignment: planting dozens of fruit trees and helping them grow.

"Give water to the apple tree."

Rebecca Larios spent a peaceful, sunny morning making good things grow.

Teaching the next generation the importance of taking care of the environment of sustainability.

"There were actually learning how to do this and they know it's going to benefit them in the long run," she said.

The orchard, nestled on an acre of land -- an old empty lot is located off Baseline Road near 10th Street between the Roosevelt School District Health and Wellness Center and three elementary schools.

Apple and peach trees were carefully planted by over 100 volunteers and students who started work late last month - the brain child of Lawrence Robinson, the governing school board member.

"In south Phoenix, we used to have miles and miles of orchards and fresh fruits grow.  It's part of our heritage we need to teach our kids," he said.

By the end of the school year, the path will be lined with 60 more citrus trees.  The Roosevelt School District also hopes to plant 10 more citrus trees at two schools.

"We want to take one garden and one orchard to every one of our schools in the district," said Robinson.

Luz Enriquez's son attends kindergarten in the district and her hope is to teach the 5-year-old about nutrition, team work and community.

"We've been talking a lot about farming and gardens as well," she said.

With help from local businesses, churches and other organizations, Robinson raised about $15,000 for the ongoing project, but the lesson taught among these trees -- one he knows will last a lifetime.

Online: www.goodthingsgrow.org

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