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

Plant the Seed at Nashville International Academy

Plant the Seed is a nonprofit that creates outdoor classrooms in community and school gardens to educate and empower underresourced young people—building cultural connections, advancing economic justice and improving their overall health and well-being. We envision a food-secure Nashville where young people, in particular, have access to fresh, local, culturally-relevant foods.

PTS uses gardening as a way to bring diverse young people together around a growing space to learn about growing food and about one another. Tennessee has the 3rd fastest growing foreign-born population in the U.S. In 2013, 84% of PTS students were recently resettled immigrants or refugees. In the garden at Nashville International Academy, our most longstanding school partner, 1st-6th grade students help revitalize fading American agricultural traditions that are sill an essential part of our national identity. Gardening provides a way for these young people to retain farming practices and cultural foods from their homelands, improve their family’s health and contribute to their new communities. The garden also provides a safe space to explore our cultural similarities and differences around one of our most basic commonalities—food. We’d like to grow the garden at NIA to an acre that includes an orchard, bees, chickens and outdoor kitchen with a wood-fire oven.

Our garden-based education meets students where they are, recognizing we have a generation that doesn’t know where their food comes from. Our approach utilizes issue education on a range of food and garden-related topics: gardening skills, nutrition, food preparation and preservation, seed saving, food sovereignty and more. Since 2011, PTS has educated 233 students and 31 adult leaders. This year we empowered 72 students and six teachers in garden-based learning, actively increasing food awareness and access and supporting blossoming youth leadership. We are growing a more food-aware, welcoming Nashville… one seed, one young person at a time.


Where it's at:

7335 Charlotte Pike
Nashville, TN 37209
United States

Garden type:

school/youth garden

Garden size (in square feet):


Garden beneficiaries:

children and immigrants

Number of people reached:


What this project needs:

fruit bushes
fruit trees
garden cart
chicken coop
outdoor oven

Project leaders:

Susannah Fotopulos
Megan Lightell

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