February 24, 2014

Director of Ag, Bonnie Plants Recognize Troy, Mo. 4th Grader for Growing Giant Cabbage

Director of Agriculture Richard Fordyce visited Lincoln Elementary School today to recognize one young lady for her green-thumb and gardening success. Katelyn Damron was announced the winner of the annual Bonnie Plants Cabbage Growing Contest during a school assembly, and congratulated by a team from Bonnie Plants, her fellow students and school administrators.

"We congratulate Katelyn on her outstanding work, and thank everyone at Bonnie Plants for their efforts to support this program now and for years to come," "said Director Fordyce. "Gardening is an excellent way for young people to learn about the hard work that goes into producing our food each and every day."

In addition to the recognition this morning, Katelyn also received a $1,000 scholarship from Bonnie Plants as a result of her outstanding cabbage. At harvest, Katelyn's cabbage weighed 21 pounds. In comparison, most cabbages sold in grocery stores weigh only a few pounds, depending on the variety.

The Troy, Mo. fourth grade student received a Mega Cabbage plant at the end of third grade while participating in the Bonnie Plants Cabbage Contest with her class. After students participating in the program harvest their cabbages, teachers are asked to submit one class winner. Class winners are then entered into a random drawing held by the state Director of Agriculture.

In 2002, Bonnie Plants launched the 3rd Grade Cabbage Program with the mission to inspire a love of vegetable gardening in young people. The company now distributes more than one million free cabbage plants to third grade classrooms each year, and has delivered 11 million cabbage plants to schools throughout the U.S. since the program began. In 2013, 27,300 Missouri 3rd graders participated in the program.

Photos of other award-winning cabbages are available on the contest website. For more information on the Missouri Department of Agriculture and its programs, visit mda.mo.gov.