The ribbon was cut Tuesday on the new Malcolm L. Krumme Community Garden and Learning Center. It’s located behind the Bryan County Health Department on Chuckwa.
The Greater Area Durant Chamber of Commerce was on hand during the ceremony.
The greenhouse will be utilized by area school children and groups interested in gardening and horticulture.
Krumme turned 98 years old the same day as the ribbon cutting.
The crowd sang happy birthday to Malcolm as he smiled enjoying the moment.
Born in 1919, Krumme has had a lifelong interest in gardening.
Since retirement, it’s given him the time to grow his hobby.
His son Don Krumme has been instrumental in making the greenhouse a reality.
Don said, “I came to a meeting here at the Health Department and they had some raised beds. It was middle of summer. It had rained. The weather was bad and they had a tough time getting it going. We talked about it and said let’s do it over. We said let’s just build a greenhouse.”
That idea got the younger Krumme in gear to make it happen.
Krumme said, “Several people around town, I knew like things like this. I got private donations instead of doing a grant or something like that. So within a week I had enough money to build a greenhouse.”
He said a contractor in Kingston built the greenhouse on site.
Krumme said, “Leon’s in Kingston came and built it over the Thanksgiving holiday. We put french drains in and basically finished it out. Our target was to get the kids from our locals schools to come over here and get active, trying to raise a generation who doesn’t want to sit around and get a hand out.”
Krumme said they put a lot of thought into what plants would be in the greenhouse.
He wants to stimulate youth to want to grow up and plant, for fun or sustenance.
School children, teachers and girl scouts are involved so far, with room for expansion.
It’s planned to be there for years to come and is built to last.
Krumme said, “The foundation is anchored from the wind and we put it behind the building here to help in case of storms or wind.”
If an organization wishes to be involved in the greenhouse, they are invited to call Brandi Maness at the Bryan County Health Department.
She said, “we wanted people to get the nutritional value from the vegetables.”
She said she wants people involved in the local farmer’s market and be healthier.
Krumme said about the inspiration for planting certain plants, “Jeannie Hazell was tickled when she found out about the greenhouse. She said, “I remember when I was a kid, I went into a place like this and how good it smelled and how pretty it was.”
Between Krumme and Hazell, they decided to plant aromatic, unusual plants that would inspire the kids to grow their own.
He said, “we didn’t want to just plant green beans.”
The community garden is available to inspire anyone to grow and enjoy plants.
There should be some great produce come out of the Malcolm L. Krumme Community Garden and Learning Center.
Contact Dan Pennington at (580) 634-2162 or [email protected]