Howe School Garden

Howe School Garden

The Howe School Garden is a joint program of Howe School and the Hiawatha-Howe PTO.  It is serves as an interactive outdoor classroom, that is managed by parents, and used by teachers and students for academic enrichment and social development.  

 

How it works

The PTO Garden Team coordinates and manages the garden for use by staff and students during the school day.  We meet throughout the year, and currently handle much of the communications through regular notifications to teachers and staff, PTO newsletters, meeting updates, and the facebook page.  Parents, staff and community members can volunteer for one-time events or ongoing care needs.  

 

If you are interested in volunteering for an event, summer care, or in joining the Garden Team (community members are welcome!), please call Howe School at  612-668-4640 or email howeschoolyardgarden@gmail.com.   

 

History

 

  • May 2013 — KaBoom playground build results in outdoor classroom (board with stools), 2 sitting benches, 2 picnic benches, two compost bins (3-stall!), and raised beds.  
  • October 2013 — Planning of garden site and design started with parents and staff. Try vermicomposting that winter.
  • April 2014 — First beds constructed, including garden table and circular garden.  Begin first season using Square-Foot Gardening
  • September 2014 — Next set of garden beds constructed for a total of 7.  Continue vermicomposting, but difficult to maintain.  
  • March 2015 — Grow Lights purchased and put together to start seedlings.  Wonderful donation of seeds from Bachmanns. Plant the garden with 2-3 crops per bed.  
  • April 2015 — awarded grants from Lowe’s Toolbox for Education and Whole Kids Foundation, which funded patio and materials for a toolshed, which a parent designed and parents volunteered in building it.  Finished  just in time for winter! 
  • Fall 2015 — piloted Garden To Cafeteria Program with MPS Food & Nutrition Services.  Students harvested produce, which was then served in the cafeteria
  • Spring 2016 — first year of 3rd Grade Garden Camp, a multi-week hands-in gardening experience!  Volunteers from Target Corp helped to get the pollinator garden ready for planting and mulched the area around the toolshed.  Our first Family Planting Day was held in June. 
  • June 2016 — parents planted the pollinator garden
  • Fall 2016 — Students harvested produce, some of which was eaten in classrooms and the rest served in cafeteria under Garden To Cafeteria program.  3rd graders cleaned up and put the garden to bed in October.  
  • Spring 2017 — 2nd year of 3rd Grade Garden Camp with two additional sessions added -- students go from seed to harvest with lettuce, radishes and peas. Followed by Family Planting Day when the crops for summer and fall will be planted.

 Click on the image to view the Garden Camp 2017 video.  A special thanks to Galen Erickson for donating your expertise in filming this video.

Garden Camp Video