Setting the objective of encouraging healthy diets among Tasmanian primary school children has
motivated a local business man to work with school children and businesses to grow pumpkins
from seedlings to full sized vegetables.
Founders of The Mountains of Pumpkins initiative, Martin Waldhoff and Karen Young from
George Self Property said the program would allow local primary school children and the
community to get out into the garden and experience being in nature.
“The pumpkins grown will then be donated to the local Foodbank to help feed hungry
Tasmanians,” Mr Waldhoff said.
“I wanted to create something that had depth to it, a program that was wholesome with a drive
towards healthy eating as well as encouraging children to be outside in the garden.”
“From the initial idea, it has just kept growing.”
“Foodbank are also very enthusiastic, as pumpkins are easy to manage, transport and store, and
are a solid food group.”
Andrew McMaster from Foodbank Tasmania said the organisation is always grateful for any food
provided especially fruit and vegetables.
“We are very pleased that young Tasmanians are thinking of us and donating pumpkins,
especially at this time of year”, Mr McMaster said.
Foodbank is a not-for-profit organisation that distributes donated food to welfare agencies to feed
the hungry. Last year Foodbank distributed over 21 million kilograms of donated food.
“This year our goal is to receive 200 big pumpkins, but within the next couple of years, my goal is
to fill the Derwent Entertainment Centre with home grown pumpkins” Mr Waldhoff said.
Mountain of Pumpkins is in its first year and already has over 100 people registered.
New Town Primary School along with Lauderdale Primary School, are the first two schools to
take part in the program which invite the parents and children to send in photos, to the projects
Facebook page, of their seedlings growing for the chance to win a monthly prize.
AMF Bowling have supplied eight free vouchers and other local businesses supporting Mountain
of Pumpkins include New Town Station Nursery which is supplying a pumpkin growing guide and
SeaSol packets and Harmony Garden Centre supporting Lauderdale Primary School.
The seedlings were planted in November and are expecting to ripen in mid-march, when a
judging will take place to award the largest pumpkin.
While only two schools will participate in the program this year, Mr Waldhoff is encouraging more
Tasmanian schools to apply next year.
The Mountains of Pumpkins