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Creating a School Garden

Working in a school garden

Many children do not have the opportunity to experience gardening or nature in a learning atmosphere. Teaching children how to be good stewards of our natural resources is of vital importance. A good school garden program can be a wonderful asset for students, teachers and volunteers, but it should not be started without careful planning.

Steps for Starting a School Garden

Form a Garden Committee after answering the following questions:
  • Is there interest in starting a school garden?
  • Are there teachers willing to lead the program and develop curriculum? Ongoing Science Department participation is critical.
  • Is there community interest?
  • Do you have volunteers?
  • Will parents participate?
  • Will this be an after school program, during school program or both?
  • What is the school’s goal for the program?
  • What percentage of the school population will be affected by the garden?
Before you design your garden be sure you are familiar with what's allowed.
  • Get Principal Approval
  • Notify School District Maintenance
  • Get District Grounds Approval
  • City Fees & Permits?
  • Create a Funding Plan – view possible funding assistance sources
  • Accessibility - Americans with Disabilities Act Compliance
Select a site for your school garden.  Here are some things to consider:
  • Access to Water
  • Hours of Sun
  • Foot Traffic
  • Visibility
  • Drainage
Design the Garden – things to consider:
  • Water Access Points
  • Rows or Raised Beds, Size, Materials (wood, stone, cinder blocks, etc.)
  • Tool Storage
  • Compost Area
  • Fencing
  • Shade Structure
  • Seating
  • Pathways
  • Planting Materials and Schedule - Visit our Plants for Collin County page.
Before you get started...a few more things to think about:
  • Student Safety Rules
  • Call Texas 811 before digging:
  • Texas public schools are required by Texas law to adhere to the school Integrated Pest Management rules.
  • Construction Schedule
  • Maintenance Plan (including summer months)

Visit our Youth Education page for a list of additional resources that might be helpful.


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