Vegetable Garden Planner Reviews: Lauren J.

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A raised garden next to a tiny blue shed and black barrels

Using the Almanac Garden Planner for School Gardens

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Almanac Garden Planner

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The garden planner review by Lauren highlights how the online Garden Planner can be used for a school garden or farm and involve the students! See how it was done. Here is Lauren’s review, garden plan, and photos.

Lauren’s Review of the Garden Planner

“I run a small farm program at Peace Rose Montessori (18 months to 6th grade) in Wilmington, NC. We have an absolutely beautiful outdoor area and this year I was able to use your Garden Planner to create a whole program for our students.

When I began as a parent volunteer in 2015, we had a small 6 chicken coop, which was constantly under raccoon attack, and three raised beds. But the space was there, the staff was on board for an expansion, and the kids were already responsible for composting. Our challenges were coop safety, more balanced compost, water, and time. For the past two years we have worked as a community to expand, grow, and build an irrigation system. We have quadrupled our coop and run size (safely-we call it Fort Bawx), more than doubled our veggie raised bed numbers, added beds for cut flower arrangements and native pollinators, a medicinal herb garden, multiple fruit trees, a vertical garden of gutters mounted along our chain link fence (also beautification), a solitary bee hotel, 5 water barrels with a drip irrigation system, and a community compost exchange program.

We meet with the kids weekly to care for and discuss the farm-its struggles and successes, what to plant, when to plant, when to harvest- and they run a monthly farm stand where the kids practice sustainable harvesting practices, customer service skills, math skills, saving, spending, and investing.

It is on a small scale, but your program really allowed me to plan and communicate to the community what projects we were developing. It also helped me stay on task with planting and harvesting, which allowed the staff and I to be guides for our students. It has been wonderful!

Here are some images of our farm/garden area as it stands and how that is reflected in the plans I developed with your Garden Planner.”

Lauren’s School Vegetable Plot Plan

We have rotating varieties of ornamential flowers, medicinal and culinary herbs, fruits, and vegetables on our outdoor play yard/farm. The kids learning valuable lessons in full circle agriculture-they are actively involved in composting, lessons on soil health, seeding and planting techniques, growing conditions, and uses for each type of plant. They cut and arrange flowers to beautify our indoor classrooms, harvest food to sell at our farm stand (sustainable harvesting practices, money handling/saving/spending, customer service skills), harvest medicinal herbs which we make into products to benefit our bodies, also for sale at the Farm Stand (entrepreneurship, DIY confidence rather than consumerism).

Click here to see enlarged garden plan as well as plant list.

A Few Photos of the Results!

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About The Author

Catherine Boeckmann

Catherine Boeckmann loves nature, stargazing, and gardening so it’s not surprising that she and The Old Farmer’s Almanac found each other. She leads digital content for the Almanac website, and is also a certified master gardener in the state of Indiana. Read More from Catherine Boeckmann

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