Maeryn Nau, of Kent, sits next to her winning cabbage that earned her $1,000 for the best cabbage in the state. COURTESY PHOTO,

Maeryn Nau, of Kent, sits next to her winning cabbage that earned her $1,000 for the best cabbage in the state. COURTESY PHOTO,

Kent girl earns $1,000 for growing best cabbage in the state

Maeryn Nau is Star Lake Elementary School student; contest is for third graders across the nation

A Kent girl earned $1,000 after for growing the best cabbage in Washington as part of the Bonnie Plants 3rd Grade Cabbage Program.

Maeryn Nau, of Star Lake Elementary School, grew a 15-pound cabbage. Nau was selected by Alabama-based Bonnie Plants on her enthusiasm to participate and learn in addition to the size and overall appearance of her cabbage, according to a Feb. 17 Bonnie Plants email to announce the award on National Cabbage Day.

More than 900 entries were received in Washington state and more than 200,000 students participated nationwide, according to a company spokesperson.

Teachers and parents can sign up students and submit photos and details about the cabbage and the student.

School gardening has become especially popular during the pandemic as a learning activity to safely bring education outdoors, according to the company. The Cabbage Program is providing a way for children of all backgrounds to take part in the trend.

Bonnie Plants initiated the 3rd Grade Cabbage Program in 1996 in and around their headquarters in Union Springs, Alabama, with a mission to inspire a love of vegetable gardening in young people, teach kids where their food comes from, and grow the next generation of gardeners. By 2002, the program grew to become a national endeavor, including the 48 contiguous states.

At the end of the season, teachers from each 3rd grade participating class select the student who has grown the “best” cabbage. Winners are then chosen by Bonnie Plants based on the student’s enthusiasm to participate and learn in addition to the size and overall appearance of their cabbage.

Bonnie Plants issues a scholarship check for students to use for their future, but it’s not something they have to wait a certain amount of years to cash, according to a Bonnie Plants spokesperson.

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