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RE: Starting a School Garden

  • Subject: RE: [cg] Starting a School Garden
  • From: "Jordan Blake" jblake@oregonfoodbank.org
  • Date: Wed, 20 Jul 2005 13:25:13 -0700
  • Content-class: urn:content-classes:message
  • Thread-index: AcWMmLqCql0uP1CUSeWERqF+djgOSgAyZIVg
  • Thread-topic: [cg] Starting a School Garden

Hi Mitch,

Today I was out here in Hillsboro, Oregon at JB Thomas Middle School,
where a school garden project is in its second year.  The garden was
initiated by Camp Fire USA and is now being collaborated on together
with Oregon Food Bank's Westside Learning Garden.  There are 4 raised
beds to the east side of the main building.  We have tomatoes, peppers,
and lettuce in one bed, carrots and radishes in the second, potatoes,
collards, and a cantaloupe in the third, and strawberries in the fourth.
We worked with kids on the prepping and planting of the bed.  I and
another Americorps VISTA are tending the garden over the summer.  We are
also exploring ways to empower this community venture.  

First off, it takes vision and a solid plan of action to create
sustainable community and school gardens.  What does this dream garden
look, smell, and taste like?  Who is involved in the garden planning and
evaluation process?
How do we go about sowing the seeds of a school garden with a future of
purpose and possibility?

These are the questions that we are asking.  These are the challenges
that we are facing.  

There are plenty of projects out there to glean information from.  A
good start could be the edible school yard out of Berkeley, California.


I would also suggest becoming apart of a local effort to nourish kids
and community in the Portland area, namely an Action Summit that was
sponsored by Community Food Matters back in May I believe.

From there, I would focus on what assets are in your general vicinity.
Find out what tools you have to work with, both physical and conceptual.

If you've got the space, the water, the soil and the need for
sustenance, then kids will find them selves magically engaged in a
learning experience that will last a life thyme.  

Peas and carrot to ya,

Jordan Blake
VISTA Learning Garden Coordinator
Oregon Food Bank - Washington County Services



-----Original Message-----
From: Mitch Frister [mailto:mitch@growing-gardens.org] 
Sent: Tuesday, July 19, 2005 12:33 PM
To: community_garden@mallorn.com
Subject: [cg] Starting a School Garden

Hello, We are starting a school garden and are collecting some
to help us make decisions. We are curious to hear about the process that
other schools have gone through in starting a garden. What worked and
didn't work? What recommendations do you have?  Does anyone know of any
specific schools that have a successful garden that we could contact?

Thanks for your help. 

Mitch Frister
Growing Gardens
Partnership Developer
NWSA Americorps
(503) 284-8420 / Fax 280-0603
2003 NE 42nd Ave. #3 Portland, OR 97213

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