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Fourth grader grows 15 pound cabbage for $1,000 prize
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Kara Kirby, a fourth-grade student at Brock Elliott School, grew this cabbage estimated at 15 pounds a year ago for the Bonnie Plant project. For her efforts, she took first place in the state, winning a $1,000 savings bond. - photo by Photo Contributed
Kara Kirby may have a green thumb.

A year ago, the fourth-grade student at Brock Elliott School took part in the Bonnie Plant Project.

Each year, Bonnie Plants distributes free cabbage plants to third-grade students across country, with the hope for youngsters to foster an interest in gardening and the environment.

The youngster’s cabbage not only sprouted in 10 weeks but grew big and large.

“They estimated it at 15 pounds,” said her mother, Rhonda Kirby.

For her efforts, Kara Kirby’s cabbage was selected as Bonnie Plant’s California winner, thus, earning a $1,000 savings bond.

At Select San Joaquin AgVenture 2010 Wednesday in Lodi, she received recognition for her accomplishment during a brief ceremony held at the Bonnie Plant display.

Nearly 3,000 third-grade students mostly from the Stockton and Lincoln unified school districts were in attendance at the event held in the Lodi Grape Festival Grounds.

They had a chance to experience everything from sheep shearing to goat milking. Included were presentations on production and processing.

Kara Kirby missed out on AgVenture a year ago. But her appearance at the Lodi function made for a special moment.
“She had fun visiting the different booths,” Rhonda Kirby said.

The Brock Elliott youngster was accompanied by her teachers – included were this year’s instructors Debbie Frazer and Debbie Doyle – along with an administrator.

She grew the cabbage in the backyard of grandparents’ Jay and Kathy Kirby, crediting her grandfather’s fertilizer as the secret ingredient.

Rhonda Kirby, meanwhile, indicated that the cabbage was donated to a church and used to make coleslaw.