A New Crop Growing at John Rennie

by Jean François Pepin and Beverly Landry

Students at John Rennie High School, along with secondary 1 teacher Jean-François Pepin, take food production to a whole new fungi level!

John Rennie High School cycle one teacher Jean François Pepin is constantly creating amazing horticultural projects for the students. Last year, the school’s Green Team grew lettuce, herbs, and lots of basil under growing lights inside the school. This year, they intend to diversify their food production by introducing the cultivation of various types of fungi. Mushroom production will allow students to expand their knowledge of healthy and local foods, while exposing students to new culinary experiences.

The team started growing the first crop of mushrooms in early October. Mushrooms thrive in dark and moist areas. Mr. Pepin placed mycelium blocks under trees and bushes in the school’s outdoor Hayden Garden. The students were responsible for spraying the mycelium blocks with water to promote fungi growth. Each mushroom variety was clearly labeled with additional information, to increase their knowledge. Three weeks later, the first harvest proved to be extremely successful. The mushrooms were brought to Ms. Fasanella’s cooking classes and transformed into delicious, simple dishes using butter and shallots to highlight the mushrooms’ natural flavours.

 

Mr. Pepin never works alone and is constantly inspired by his colleagues’ eagerness to participate in these ecological projects.

He extends his thanks to regular collaborators Ms. Breck, M. Kinsella, Ms. Lobaton, Ms. Birks, Ms. Natcheva and Ms. Fasanella.

Student involvement is the driving factor of any good project and the students from the Jr. Green team, CFER, and Jr. and Sr. Leadership contributed to the enormous success of this first harvest.

Mr. Pepin never works alone and is constantly inspired by his colleagues’ eagerness to participate in these ecological projects.

He extends his thanks to regular collaborators Ms. Breck, M. Kinsella, Ms. Lobaton, Ms. Birks, Ms. Natcheva and Ms. Fasanella.

Student involvement is the driving factor of any good project and the students from the Jr. Green team, CFER, and Jr. and Sr. Leadership contributed to the enormous success of this first harvest.

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