Calvert – War on Weeds

Hello Garden Friends,

IMG_0032The air was cold, the ground was wet, the enemy could be seen lurking around the edges of our beds and around the bases of our trees. It was time to take up arms. With claws and hula hoes the 2nd graders spent the first half of class learning that a farmer’s job can be hard, both emotionally and physically. It’s not all rainbows and sunshine when you have to pull a big Mallow root out of the soil. Who wants to be the bad guy right? Well, today we justified our actions by acknowledging that these plants can make the pathways unsafe and can also steal water from the plants that we do want to grow.







With the second half of class I made sure that the students got to do some planting as well. It is a more hopeful and gratifying job in my opinion. Looking at the colorful seed packet and imagining the future harvest inspires the children to pay attention and sow the seeds correctly. 1″ deep for beans and 1/2″ deep for sunflowers.

Until next time,


Jeff Mailes

Jeff Mailes is a garden designer and environmental educator working out of Woodland Hills, CA. A Los Angeles County Master Gardener and UC Davis Alumni, Jeff earned his B.S. in Environmental Resource Science in 2012 and has been growing edibles and natives for the past 6 years.

Jeff’s passion for plants and garden education has led him to school gardens from Los Angeles to Sacramento and all the way up to Portland, Oregon. Now familiar with ecosystems across the West Coast, Jeff has settled back home and works to bring people together over food and inspire the next generation of earth stewards to leave it better than they found it. When not writing about himself in the third person, Jeff enjoys singing with his guitar, going on camping and hiking excursions, and tossing a frisbee around with his friends.