Los Altos Elementary plants Seeds of Change in Hacienda Heights

You’ve heard of home makeovers. Los Altos Elementary needs a garden makeover.

To raise the money it needs, the Hacienda Heights school asks everyone to vote for them to get a Seeds of Change grant at www.seedsofchangegrant.com.

The organic seed company based in Rancho Dominguez donates 1 percent of its net sales toward sustainable organic farming initiatives worldwide.

This year, it is awarding $190,000 to community and school gardens. Two groups will get $20,000 grants, while 15 others will get $10,000 each.

“One of our teachers is a gardener, and she heard about the program that promotes sustainable gardening,” explained Principal Rosalie Sinapi.

Los Altos built its school garden almost seven years ago. Over the years, it has had its ups and downs as garden volunteers come and go.

But a couple of years ago, the garden literally went to seed. Soon, it was choked with untended plants growing wild.

“It looked like a jungle, so my son and I got out our weed whacker to cut down the waist-high brush,” Sinapi said.

And volunteers from Sam’s Club helped rip out the tangled roots. But the damage was done. Staff and students are finding it a tough row to hoe as they try to restore their garden.

“We paid $2,000 last year to put in a new water line, but it’s taking a lot of time and money to fix our garden,” the administrator said.

That’s why the Hacienda Heights school hopes it can win one of the Seeds of Change grants. In its grant application, instructors noted they would like to use a new garden to teach kids and families about healthy eating.

Read more in GARDEN.

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