Iroquois students enjoy salad harvested from hydroponic tower

Pupils at Iroquois Public School enjoy the fruits of their hydroponic labours. From left: Kelsey Duncan, Kathryn Swerdfeger, Jack Croteau, Meredith Windle and Mason Hummel. Courtesy photo

IROQUOIS — Stephanie Guindon’s Grade 6 class at Iroquois Public School celebrated their first harvest from their hydroponic tower with a salad party.

The students harvested over 3 kg of lettuce, bok choy and swiss chard. They expect another harvest in just a couple of weeks. All future harvests will be donated to Community Food Share. It is part of a marketing strategy developed by the students for their newly formed ‘company’ called The Green Machine/La Machine Verte. Their motto is ‘Go Green or Go Home’.

The project is part of Growing Futures, a concept developed by the Parkdale Food Centre in Ottawa. The platform teaches kids to grow fresh vegetables using innovative technology and to develop their entrepreneurial and financial literacy skills.

Growing Futures was introduced to Iroquois Public School as part of a collaboration between the Parkdale Food Centre and Community Food Share.

Community Food Share received $4,000 in funding from Food Bank Canada's Innovation Grant. The grant was made possible through the financial support of the KraftHeinz Foundation. A total of $60,000 was awarded to food banks across Canada to encourage innovation and transformative change within the organization itself or in the local community. Community Food Share used the funds to sponsor the installation of two hydroponic food towers.

The second hydroponic tower was installed last week at Community Living Dundas County in Morrisburg. Their first planting of leafy green vegetables and herbs used seedlings started by The Green Machine student entrepreneurs at Iroquois Public School.

If you would like to participate in the Growing Futures project by either hosting or sponsoring a hydroponic tower, please contact Ian McKelvie at 613-898- 0781 or

IPS student Danica Casselman tends to the hydroponic unit and its crop of greens. Courtesy photo



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