You can grow your own food. And we can help!

Composter's Secret Garden at Longley Elementary School

St. Mary's Nutrition Center promotes community health through organizing, advocacy and education.  Its diverse programming includes emergency food provision, cooking and nutrition education, food access projects, youth and children's programs, and community gardens.  Its children's programming includes garden-based education programs in schools.

Named by Longley Elementary students, the Composter's Secret Garden in Lewiston, Maine, is made up of six raised beds just beyond the school's playground, making it an accessible resource for the Kindergarten through 6th grade students. Currently, the primary beneficiaries of the project are fourth and fifth grade students who receive garden-based nutrition lessons and after-school cooking classes lead by a FoodCorps Service Member. Rooted in the heart of a diverse community, including Somali, Congolese and Angolan immigrants, the Composter's Secret Garden at Longley plays an important role in teaching children how to grow their own food, develop healthy eating habits and encourage curiosity. The year-old garden gives students the opportunity to see the results of their hard work from seed to harvest and even take vegetables home to their families. 

Our goal for this year is to develop and educate a committee of teachers and parents devoted to the sustainability of the Composter's Secret Garden so that more students will have the opportunity to use their garden during the school year.  Beginning in mid-June, we will partner with a youth-focused organization in which we will conduct daily garden lessons with rotating groups of elementary students, totaling around 100 students.  Through this grant, we would like to  expand our garden's growing capacity, create more education and outreach space in the garden, and grow enough produce to serve in the cafeteria through taste tests and salad bars, ultimately reaching every student in the school.  

Where it's at:

145 Birch Street
Lewiston, ME 04240
United States

Garden type:

school/youth garden

Garden size (in square feet):


Garden beneficiaries:

children and food insecure people

Number of people reached:


What this project needs:

fruit trees

Project leaders:

Nick Geer
Annie Doran

About us:

KGI is a nonprofit community of over 30,000 people who are growing some of our own food and helping others to do the same.  

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Contact us:

Kitchen Gardeners International
3 Powderhorn Drive,
Scarborough, ME, 04074, USA
(207) 956-0606