4-H Newberry County

February 9, 2022

This year Newberry County 4-H has focused on developing county level projects for youth to participate in. Last summer, we held our first County Tomato Project. Nine youth participated in growing tomatoes that might be the largest or the ugliest in the county. As we were purchasing the prizes for these winners, things that they could grow in a fall garden, it was suggested that we try a Turnip Project since “turnips grow ugly too!” By September, we had 11 youth and 3 schools growing purple top turnips.

Each project started with a kick-off. This year, those were held virtually and led by Clemson Extension Horticulture Agents. Youth were exposed to the history of the crop and taught the do’s and don’ts of growing them successfully, how to harvest and measure for the project, and even what the tomato or turnip could be used for. For the Tomato Project, youth were given seedlings and for the Turnip Project, we started with seeds. In addition to growing and harvesting the plants, youth were expected to complete a project record book that allowed them to keep track of planting and harvesting dates, precipitation, problems in the garden, and project expenses/profits. At the culmination of the project, youth submitted photos and measurements of their largest fruit and ugliest harvest. We utilized social media for voting, allowing the community to choose the ugliest tomato and ugliest turnip in all the land, well at least in Newberry.

This project has been fun even though things haven’t always gone as expected, dates have had to be extended, and virtual can still be a challenge, but learning has always happened and since “learn by doing” is the motto of 4-H, we’ll call it a success!

Tape measure a tomatoe4-H Turnip Project


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