School Gardens - Grow Our Own

  • NOVEMBER 2020 UPDATE

    For 2020 season, each of the Discovery Club sites had small pop-up gardens to grow food, harvest and take home -- observing best practices for food safety.  In the spring, we also met with each garden team from schools with edible school gardens to develop a covid-safe planting and maintenance plan.  Some continued to grow produce to donate and worked with partners to do so safely.  In others, we planted cover crops to feed and protect the soil this growing season and weeded periodically.  

    Our thanks to the volunteers and SPPS staff who stepped up to plant and tend the gardens this season, and to MSHS for the pop-up garden kits.  

    We will support food production again at schools for 2021 season.  If you would like to volunteer or explore garden partnership, please contact Grow Our Own Coordinator at kirsten.saylor@spps.org.  Thank you!  

     

     

      


    OTHER RESOURCES

    Get a free First Aid Kit for class garden visits

    Facilities provides first aid kits for free for Discovery Clubs and Gardens.  Fill out the request form -- Personal Protective Equipment - DISCOVERY CLUB & GARDENS. For non-SPPS staff, please ask a staff person on the garden committee or the principal to make the request for you.

     

    Growing Fruit?  

    Check out FruitEdge, a website maintained by UMN Horticultural Department to provide timely information and share ongoing research about Integrated Pest Management (IPM) for fruit.  

     

    Season Extension  

    There are a number of ways to extend the length of the growing season into the school year using different techniques and mechanisms to start early and end later.  Check out UMN Extension’s webpage for a quick primer.

     

    MN School Garden Website

    In partnership with other organizations and school garden supporters, we have started to pull together a school garden website for Minnesota, featuring MN-specific resources and vetted for our climate.  Check it out at bit.ly//mnschoolgardennetwork and share resources with others!  Let’s keep it growing! 

     

    Project Anywhere Farm 

    Grow your own wherever you are!  This project is based on the storybook "Anywhere Farm" by Phyllis Root.  Check the project's website for tips, hacks, and activities for your family, not to mention videos that include Read Outloud of the book and an interview with the author. 

     

     

  • Grow Our Own is a program that aims to increase the opportunities for food and agricultural education for all students within the District by connecting school gardens, the cafeteria, and the classroom.  We are doing this through clarifying policies, providing networking and learning opportunities, and identifying resources for schools for successful Food Gardens. 

    This project supports Nutrition Services mission:"To eliminate hunger and provide every child with HOPE (Healthy Options, Positive Engagement) through exceptional food"

     
  • Sign-up for SPPS School Garden Newsletter! 

    Teachers, staff, parents and community members! Join the SPPS school garden email list to stay informed!  

     

    Update information about your school garden! 

    Got a garden? Fill out Garden Inventory Form to join the growing census of gardens, and to update contact information or partnership informatoin.  This information is critical so that we can effectively reach your school with opportunities and updates in a timely manner.

     

    School Garden Standards and Procedures

    Facilities has created a new Standards and Procedures for School Gardens!  Interested in starting, expanding or revamping your school garden? Need resources?  Contact kirsten.saylor@spps.org to get started!

     

    Have a school garden question?    

    Email kirsten.saylor@spps.org -- how to get started, how to run it, logistics & resources, safe food handling, Garden to Cafeteria Program, etc.  

     
    THANK YOU!
    The Grow Our Own school garden program is supported by The Cargill Foundation, the USDA's Office of Community Food Systems- Farm to School Program, Allina Health and the Statewide Health Improvement Partnership, through Saint Paul-Ramsey County Public Health and the Minnesota Department of Health.