Martin Luther King Jr. elementary students get gardening lesson

A field trip to The Farm at South Mountain.

"Plants need to grow just like us," Third-grader Naomi said.

Teaching K-3 students at Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary School about the agricultural roots of the once "farmland" of south Phoenix.

"When we think about south Phoenix, we think about food, we talk about pride, we talk about culture, so this opportunity is pretty amazing, not only for our kids but for the community to see what our kids can do," Quintin Boyce said.

"It's important to be beyond yourself to do what you can, where you are for other people, other than just yourself," said Greg Brownell, director of sustainability at The Farm at South Mountain.

This year's program, "Gather and Grow," uses gardening boxes to educate the children on the basics of self-sustainability and the importance of planting, growing and harvesting fresh vegetables and herbs.

"What do we do about taking a small amount of food resources and making it work for a big family," Brownell said.

This way -- just like these students.

"I like getting the soil with the scoop, then putting it in there," one student said.

Younger generations can pass on the importance of gardening a small amount of food resources and making it work for a big family with local plants.