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A fruitful project: Cafeteria will serve food that kids grow

Memo Perez, of Denver, shovels dirt around the base of a fruit tree last week for the Fruit Tree 101 project at Kepner Middle School in Denver. Produce from the fruit trees will be served in students lunch when the trees are fully grown. Trees also were planted at Denver School of Science and Technology in Stapleton.
Provided by: Kristin Morin/ 

by: Kathryn Richert

Article Contributed on: 7/7/2010 10:04:54 AM

Despite being on summer break, Kepner Middle School and Denver School of Science and Technology students showed up at school last week, not with books, but with shovels.

They were there to plant fruit trees in the school's garden that when full grown, will bear apples, apricots, cherries, peaches, plums and pears. The fruit will then go in students' lunches and to community members who help plant and harvest the trees.

The effort is part of a multi-organizational push to promote urban gardening and particularly school gardening at districts metrowide, including Denver Public Schools, especially in "food deserts," or areas with limited access to healthy food, such as the area in which Kepner sits.

"It's good for the community because it brings people together," said Alondra Sandoval, 14, who helped plant trees with GRASP, or Gang Rescue and Support Project

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