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The cycle of life

​Blake shovelling mulch

​…as illustrated by a schoolyard tree.

At the back of our school grew a large Albizia tree. This tree produced many flowers and seeds that usually lay scattered on the ground around the base.

Under the tree was very shady and a concrete garden setting was placed there to provide a peaceful setting for outdoor education. The tree had three large trunks growing from a thick base. One night a strong wind blew and next morning we found two of the trunks had broken off and lay on the ground.

We were sad for the loss of the tree but then saw the opportunity to obtain much needed mulch for our garden beds.

A woodchip service was called and many of the students got to watch from a safe distance as the workers cut the tree into small pieces and fed it through the woodchip machine. On the next school day we found a large mound of woodchip where the tree used to be.

But this was not the end of that tree. Before the wood-chippers moved in some of our students gathered some seeds and planted them in a seed raising tray. Only a week later these students observed little Albizia trees sprouting from the seed raising mixture. 

Other students have been working hard shovelling mulch into wheelbarrows and placing it in our garden beds.

The tree that once provided a shady spot for our students is now providing weed control, moisture retention, and nutrients for our garden plants.