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Mall hosts Agriculture Week celebration

LIHU‘E — Amy Chun of the Kaua‘i County Farm Bureau said Kapa‘a High School Project Laulima was offering seedlings of black futsu squash on Saturday, in addition to the variety of vegetable starters being offered by others, during the Agricultural Week Celebration that drew a steady stream of patrons through the shopping center.

“This is an heirloom vegetable from Japan,” said Will Caraway, the instructor from the Laulima Project of the Natural Sciences Academy at Kapa‘a High School. “People can eat this in all kinds of ways. The skin is edible, so there’s no need to peel it. And it’s one of the varieties that can grow in our zone. It tested the best during our trials.”

The Laulima Project, set up between the high school and the Easter Seals facility, shone during the COVID-19 pandemic when the black futsu squash was sent out to supplement community food needs.

“After having critically observed the impact of a societal shift away from the sustainable food systems of the peoples of Hawai‘i, Kapa‘a High School started the Laulima Project as a way to begin a return to a system that will allow our island communities to thrive instead of merely survive,” a program description states.

“The 1.5-acre outdoor classroom/garden has the capacity to address many of the critical issues that will dramatically affect out students’ futures.”

Agriculture Week, presented nationally as part of The American Presidency Project, recognizes the “unique and irreplaceable value that farmers, ranchers, foresters, farm workers and other agricultural stewards have contributed to the nation’s past and present.”

The Laulima Project said food shortages during the pandemic taught many that is it a necessity for students to learn how to develop and maintain secure food systems.

Other seeds being distributed the Kaua‘i County Farm Bureau and the University of Hawai‘i College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources Master Gardeners program included three different varieties of sugar pod peas that will be judged during the agricultural festival on June 17 and 18 at the Vidinha Stadium north fields, and the special plants being distributed by Brian Yamamoto of Kaua‘i Community College, that will host its Ho‘olaule‘a No Ka Honua, or Celebration for the Earth, on April 22 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., on Earth Day, at the Puhi campus.

“Springtime is when everything is growing,” said Melissa McFerrin-Warrack of Kukui Grove Center, who arranged for a special visit by the Easter bunny to preview the shopping center’s Easter week of activities.


Dennis Fujimoto, staff writer and photographer, can be reached at 808-245-0453 or
Source: The Garden Island

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