Middle School Students Get Their Hands Dirty at Lornado

U.S. Ambassador to Canada Bruce Heyman and Mrs. Vicki Heyman were delighted to welcome a group of students from Ottawa’s Fisher Park  Public School to Lornado on June 8. As members of Fisher Park’s Eco Club and Community Helpers group, the students were invited to join Mrs. Heyman on a tour of new and ongoing greening initiatives at the Residence.

Beekeeper Ted Norris shows explains the Lornado apiary. (Credit US Embassy Ottawa)
Beekeeper Ted Norris explains the Lornado apiary. (Credit US Embassy Ottawa)

The students were among the first to tour Lornado’s soon-to-be-installed apiary, an initiative in conjunction with the Obama Administration’s effort to support bees and other pollinators. The apiary will also contribute to the U.S. Department of State’s commitment, made in the National Pollinator Strategy, to increase pollinator-friendly habitat at overseas diplomatic posts and highlight the importance of supporting pollinators worldwide. The students were eager to learn about the project and the practice of beekeeping in general from beekeeper Ted Norris, who brought real honeycomb for the students to sample.

Students digging into the soil at Lornado. (Credit US Embassy Ottawa)
Students digging into the soil at Lornado’s Kitchen Garden. (Credit US Embassy Ottawa)

At the newly upgraded Kitchen Garden, the students discussed the health and environmental benefits of growing fruits and vegetables at home. Many of the students described fruits and vegetables they had planted in their own gardens, and they were eager to help Lornado’s gardeners plant crops of lettuce and pole beans.

Students dig into post-gardening snacks. (Credit US Embassy Ottawa)
Students dig into post-gardening snacks. (Credit US Embassy Ottawa)

After their hard work, the students joined Ambassador and Mrs. Heyman for a healthy snack on the front porch, where they talked to Lornado’s chef about cooking with sustainably grown ingredients and exchanged ideas about greening initiatives going on at their school.

Students pose with Ambassador and Mrs. Heyman. (Credit US Embassy Ottawa)
Students pose with Ambassador and Mrs. Heyman. (Credit US Embassy Ottawa)

The entire Lornado property was officially recognized as a wildlife habitat by the U.S. National Wildlife Foundation’s Certified Wildlife Habitat program in 2016, making it the first official U.S. diplomatic residence to acquire this recognition.