Shapleigh School Garden
Shapleigh School is seeking a Sow It Forward grant to expand our 8 x 10 greenhouse into a fully integrated and sustainable outdoor classroom with raised garden beds that nourish and educate our students and their families. Sow It Forward funds will enable Shapleigh School to accomplish three goals: build four 4 x 8 raised garden beds, create more hands on learning opportunities, and further educate families about the importance of maintaining a lifestyle that includes healthy eating and active learning.
Last year Shapleigh students grew seeds awarded through the USDA Seeds of Change program in our greenhouse. Students then sold the carrot, beet, and parsnip seedlings at our local farmers market in order to raise money for supplies for the greenhouse. Other seedlings such as tomatoes, radishes, and lettuce greens were left to grow in the greenhouse since we have no raised beds. These vegetables were then served on the school salad bar. Needless to say, growing the seedlings to fruition in the greenhouse was a bit tricky and a little disappointing as some of the seedlings didn’t make it because the greenhouse got too hot!
With the addition of raised bed gardens made possible by a Sow It Forward grant, we know students will benefit in numerous ways including understanding the importance of the growing environment, understanding the plant cycle, and also understanding marketing and sales. A Sow It Forward grant will allow us to continue to start seedlings in our greenhouse then move the plants outside to raised beds. This spring students will be able to sell heartier starter plants at our local farmer’s market. In addition, we plan to have more vegetables such as lettuce greens, tomatoes, radishes, carrots, squash, zucchini, and beets to serve on our school salad bar during the spring and fall months.
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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