In early November, huge gusts of wind ripped through the Dupont hoop house, completely detaching the plastic covering and bending the metal frame to one side. The extent of the damage came as a shock, especially since we had been about to put up side walls, which would have prevented the wind from wreaking so much havoc.
Thankfully, the Horticulture program from Chicopee Comprehensive High School came to our rescue, and we worked together to make a plan to improve the hoop house for this coming growing season! The Horticulture shop has been a wonderful partner, and has helped us grow our school garden program across the district by building and repairing garden beds; distributing seeds, starts, and soil; and offering soil testing and other expertise. We're very thankful for the huge role that they've played in getting this hoop house ready to rock and roll for spring 2020!
The pictures below were taken four months after the wind storm. Horticulture teacher, Jonathan Duff, and a group of his students are attaching end walls and doors to the hoop house. Students have been hard at work over the winter months building these doors, as well as new tables for seed starting. These tables will line one side of the hoop house, and the other side will be tilled so that students can plant directly in the ground.
The project be should be completed by the start of Dupont's spring garden club on March 19th! Garden club students will be starting seeds to plant in Dupont's garden beds, as well as to distribute to some of the elementary school gardens across the district.
The ChicopeeFRESH team is a group of creative individuals who are working to feed Chicopee students healthy, local and FRESH foods each day.