WESTFORD — After receiving national acclaim for a recent project at Westford’s community garden, a Day School student received an award from Rep. James Arciero for his work.
After recently receiving the President’s Environmental Youth Award for his work on sustainability within the garden, Rep. James Arciero presented Rahul Ram, a sixth grade Day School student with an official citation.
“I look forward to being involved as you move forward,” Arciero told Ram. “This is all very cool stuff.”
Ram began his project approximately four years ago after joining a Lego league, where students are tasked with solving a real-world issue.
“What we though of is ‘how do you grow plants on the moon’ because soil is not an efficient way to grow plants,” Ram told WestfordCAT.
He continued, “we started to figure out how to use this new technique, hydroponics, where you can grow plants in just nutrients and water.”
Ram also aimed to reduce the carbon footprint of gardeners travelling to water their plots. He created his own website to better coordinate gardeners to reduce trips to the garden.
“If we water our neighbors plots, then that means we are watering one extra plot, which means double, which also means half of the cars are going to be reduced,” he said.
Ram also noted he informed gardeners of when to water their plots based on predicted weather and to water their neighbors plots during their time at the garden.
“Last summer, I used to go stand near the community garden, provide my presentation and explain hydroponics and bring awareness to it,” said Ram.
Ram hopes to continue his work throughout the school year, while exploring new ideas as he continues to experiment.
“I’m going to continue to do this, I hope to automate hydroponics in some way,” said Ram. “Of course, new ideas are going to come up at some point.”
He continued, “I also just wanted to thank the Westford Community Garden for giving me this idea.”
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