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Webster Parish students help the ecosystem with a unique garden

by Minden Press-Herald

Sibley, La – Students at Lakeside Junior and Senior High School in Sibley are learning an important lesson about nature and the role plants play in our ecosystem. The students planted milkweed in the school’s new pollinator garden.

They are working with Quail Forever biologist Sabrina Claeys. Lakeside is the first school in Louisiana to cultivate a pollinator garden alongside Quail Forever.

As it grows, the milkweed will attract Monarch butterflies heading north from Mexico after their winter hibernation. Monarch butterflies are a threatened species and only lay their eggs in milkweed plants.

The students began growing the milkweed last year, but unfortunately, the first crop did not survive. Monarchwatch.org donated a new batch that was planted in the garden on the school grounds.

As the garden grows, it will attract more insects likes bees, beetles, even ants to help spread pollen.

“For me, I hope that the kids will understand that even small changes they make in everyday life can have a big outcome for organisms,” said Lakeside science teacher Angela Glasscock.

The pollinator garden should be in full bloom and helping the ecosystem by the time the students who planted the initial milkweed are ready to graduate.

A number of nonprofits and businesses helped with this project including Quail Forever, Pheasant Forever, Monarchwatch.org, Ace Hardware and Minden Farm and Garden.

For more information, contact Ed Walsh with Romph Pou Agency at (318) 424-2676 ext. 345.

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