Roselle Park recently initiated a Community Garden that is currently in the process of sign-ups. But for the longest time, residents have exercised their green thumbs to cultivate their own piece of nature in their backyards.
Among them is Sherman School student Owen Miller. Last month, Owen – who was the New Jersey State Winner in the National Bonnie Plants Cabbage Program for growing a whopping 21 pound 2 ounce cabbage – was awarded a $1,000 savings bond scholarship at a ceremony in his school. Being chosen from over 21,000 third graders throughout the state, Owen had taken part in Bonnie Plants’ program last summer to have schoolchildren cultivate they plant wholesaler’s ‘oversized’ variety of cabbage plants. The students get to witness the fruits, or in this case the vegetable, of their labor through nurturing and cultivating cabbage.
Introduced by Sherman School principal Mary Christiansen, the presentation had New Jersey Secretary of Agriculture Douglas H. Fisher and Bonnie Plants New Jersey Manager Casey Jansen provide some history and information on the various produce grown in the country’s most densely populated state. With over 9,000 productive farms in the Garden State that cover over 700,000 acres, Jersey crops include apples, corn, tomatoes, bell peppers, blueberries, cranberries, cucumbers, peaches, potatoes, soybeans, spinach, squash, strawberries, and cabbage. The audience included members of Owen’s class, his teacher Ms. Parker, Roselle Park School District Superintendent Pedro Garrido, and Councilwoman-At-Large Charlene Storey.
Surrounded by his parents – Jen Miller and Board Of Education President Chris Miller – his sister, and his grandparents, Owen was presented with a $1,000 savings bond from Bonnie Plants to use toward his education.