Vermont School Garden

A visit to a Vermont public school garden through the seasons.

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Planting with Mandy

After we mapped out a plan for where  seedlings would go, each class came out during the day to look at the garden map and to plant a crop. In the summer and fall we’ll harvest for our school lunch program and for study projects. We need to thank Paul Harlow and the generous farmers at Harlow Farm as well as Dan Harlow at Harlow farm stand for their donations of labor and seedlings. We also thank the Goodell Farm for  composted manure. Without their help we wouldn’t have our incredible school garden. What an amazing community!


CUCUMBERS 1ST GR. (farm tutor: Teo Harlow)




K is for Kindergarten and for KALE




BASIL grade 4



spreading compost



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Getting Ready to Garden Outdoors

spring garden cleanup

You can see that there was a lot to clean up from last year’s garden. We all worked together to create a big burn pile and then made a fire. (Please contact your local fire department before trying this.) First we dug a fire pit and made sure we had a hose at the ready. We also alerted our friends at the fire department.

Among the chores for getting our garden ready was cleaning up the greenhouse. Thanks to our hard working custodian, Adam Hallock, we have a new cover for the school greenhouse. Mandy and a class had planted spinach that we discovered growing like a weed…a nice surprise for early April. We weeded it and took our harvest to the kitchen. Later we found it at the salad bar. Thanks, Chef Harley Sterling!

We also trimmed last year’s raspberry canes down to the ground and we pruned the apple and pear trees.

burn pile

taking away the old sunflowers

cutting back the raspberry canes

hoeing between spinach rows

greenhouse cleanup

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Getting Ready for our Garden: Spring 2017

planting seeds

By February, we’re starting to dream about melting snow and signs of spring. Although those dreams are a bit far from reality, we can still plant little seeds of hope that winter will soon be over. In the library, classes learned about starting seedlings. They got  a close-up look at different types of seeds using hand held magnifying glasses. Then they planted their own marigolds, tomatoes and basil. These flats of seedlings will take a “vacation” at the Harlow Farm greenhouse for a few months and then they’ll be planted into our school garden.


misting seedlings

examining a marigold seed

learning about seeds in the spring with Librarian, Mandy Walsh

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Farewell to the 2016 Growing Season, Happy Thanksgiving!

Garden Gourds

You can see that most of our lush green garden has died back with the frosts that come early to Vermont. In November, we’re harvest the last of what is growing and bringing it indoors. Our school has a Thanksgiving tradition involving a community lunch for parents and students. It’s one of the school’s best attended events. We try to incorporate as much of our garden produce as possible. Below are some Thanksgiving photos.

making kale salad

last of the raspberries

team stuffing makers

Community Thanksgiving Lunch