John Edwards Middle

Contact info:

Name: Matt Brinkman

Email: brinkman@pesd.k12.wi.us

Phone: (715) 887-9000 ext. 220

Size:  Approximately 10x35 ft growing area plus suspended hanging basket growing and container gardening.  192 sq. ft. of new benching (attained through the grant) and some stackable shelving (attained through grant) to increase growing space if needed.  The greenhouse is heated and has a watering/misting system in place - some updating of the existing system (including an automated watering timer) is also being attained as part of the grant. 

How the garden is used:

The greenhouse has been used as hands-on experience for Botany classes.  Students were involved in planning and raising a variety of veggies, herbs, flowers, and houseplants from seed as part of the course.  Students were given the option of taking greenhouse products home as well as selling them at a plant sale during the Port Edwards village-wide garage sale.  Some space was also utilized by Deanne Borski to grow plants and lettuce with her younger students. 

 

A collaborative project began a couple of years ago allowing botany students to teach younger students how to grow varieties of lettuce, spinach and other salad greens from seed.  Students cared for, harvested and served these products as part of school lunches throughout the spring.

 

Students have also grown flowers and plants that were placed in planters around the building and included in some of the landscaping near the greenhouse.  We are hoping to expand the amount of produce grown in the greenhouse to be used for wider school consumption (lettuce, herbs, possibly veggies, etc), decorative plants for the school grounds, and possibly expand the run-time of the greenhouse so it may be utilized by classes year round.

 

Favorite student garden activities: 

For the most part, students love the whole experience of working in the greenhouse.  They are amazed at watching the plants grow from seed to the point where they are actually producing flowers or edible produce.  They know from the start that they will be using some of the plants for their gardens at home, and it inspires some students to start a garden at home.  A big favorite though, is the collaborative lettuce growing experience and “taste-tests” throughout the process.

 

Current events in the garden:

Not much is currently going on as far as growing plants, but new acquisitions will soon be installed and things will be set up for spring.  Installing the new benching and getting the automated watering system up & running are two exciting projects just around the bend.