All gone! Free veggie starts at Ceres Garden

Plants are all gone for now!

Sweetwater Nursery has graciously donated flats of beautiful lettuce, broccoli, cauliflower & more for area schools. The plants are available for garden coordinators and teachers to pick up now at Ceres Garden in Sebastopol.

Please take only the plants on the 2 pallets in the garden, marked for SGN. And please bring flats to carry plants away. Leave the nurseries’ flats behind.

There are also some garden supplies that were donated by a community member. They should be sitting under the same SGN table. Help yourselves!

Check back here regularly as we hope to get ongoing donations.

Whole Kids Grant-Sept 1st!

US School Garden Grants

Created in partnership with FoodCorps, the School Garden Grant program provides a $2,000 monetary grant to support an edible educational garden on the grounds of a K-12 school. Schools, or a non-profit organization working in partnership with a school, may apply.

Interested in a garden grant for a non-profit children’s programming organization, not located at a school? Check out our Extended Learning Garden Grant program!2016 US School Garden Grant
Application Open: September 1st, 2015

  • Application Closed: October 31, 2015 at 5pm CST
  • Review Period: Winter 2016
  • Notification to All Applicants: February 15, 2016
  • Email with any questions

Volunteers & Auction Items at Heirloom Expo!

Volunteer for a 4 hour shift at the Heirloom Expo and receive a free entrance and parking pass!!!

Did you know that participating schools are the beneficiary of the proceeds of the Silent Auction at the Expo. Let Elizabeth know if you can help secure auction items.SGN would really appreciate some help with soliciting items. We want to make this the most lucrative auction ever!!

Have not registered your school to display at the EXPO?   You are in luck-there is still some space. You can register at  The National Heirloom Exposition 2016_1. If you are registering late make sure to let Elizabeth know-contact below.

Reminder that KIDS Day is now all three days at the Expo!

There will be lots of kids activities happening daily in and around Finley Hall.

For more information or to lend a hand at the SGN booth or auction contact our amazing  Heirloom Coordinator-Elizabeth Westerfield (707)887-2599  or



Next Generation Science in the Garden Workshop

Let’s head outside and put earth and life back into Earth and Life Science!

otherAppsImage(1)School Garden Network is excited to announce that we are collaborating with Wilson Elementary in Petaluma and LifeLab* to offer a fabulous workshop for educators this September called Next Generation Science in the Garden.

Using lessons from Life Lab’s The Growing Classroom activity guide, participants in this workshop learn to use a garden as a meaningful context in which their students can engage in Next Generation Science and Engineering Practices to examine Disciplinary Core Ideas and Cross-Cutting Concepts. Where better to explore ecological interdependence, growth and development of organisms, structure and function, adaptation, and the environmental impact of human activity than in an outdoor garden classroom? Graduate education units available.

Class will be taught by Carrie Strohl. Read her bio here.

* Life Lab is a 501(c)3 nonprofit located on the UC Santa Cruz farm. Life Lab cultivates children’s love of learning, healthy food, and nature through garden-based education.

Click to Register for LifeLab 


LifeLab: Next Generation Science in the Garden

Wilson Elementary School, Petaluma
Use school’s back entrance at 600 Middle Two Rock Road, Petaluma

Hours: 9:00-3:30 Please arrive a bit early to get settle in!

Workshop will be indoors and outdoors so please dress accordingly
Vegetarian garden lunch will be provided
Graduate Education Credit will be available

$100 before September 1st
$150 after September 1st

Please send checks made out to: School Garden Network, PO Box 1367, Sebastopol, CA 95473
Workshop fees are not refundable

Scarecrow Competition at the Farmer Olympics!


School Garden Network is proud to sponsor the Scarecrow Competition at the 2016 Farmer Olympics hosted by the Farmers Guild. This is a contest where individuals and groups can enter their home-made scarecrow. Be creative and show us how to scare those pests away! There will be metals awarded to the top three contestants as well as a prize for the winner.


We look forward to seeing you at the Farmer Olympics on September 17th , from 12-7 at the Petaluma Fairgrounds.

The Details

  • Scarecrow submission begins at 12 and ends at 5:00
  • Winning scarecrows will be announced at 5:30
  • Metals for the top three contestants and a prize for the gold medalist

Garden Assistant Position at Old Adobe Charter

Old Adobe Elementary
Garden Assistant for Old Adobe Edible Garden

The Garden Assistant is a position that offers critical support to teachers and students to ensure that our school can maximize the educational potential of the garden. The Garden Assistant works with staff to plan lessons, gather materials, maintain the garden, and support instruction linked to the garden. The Garden Assistant will deliver weekly lessons in-class and out in the garden to all elementary students —combining environmental science education and nutrition education with hands-on experiences in the school garden (planting, tending, harvesting, and cooking).

The Garden Assistant also acts as a resource for teachers as they plan their own cross-curricular lessons in the outdoor classroom, and models skills that teachers need to feel comfortable using the garden to teach science standards.

The Assistant:

  • Facilitates garden science classes, incorporating both environmental science and nutrition education as they relate to the garden.
  • Assists and helps in planning, with the classroom teacher, the students’ hands-on experiences in the garden (planting, tending, harvesting and cooking).
  • Builds involvement in and commitment to the school garden within the school community, including teachers, administrators, students, parents and community volunteers.
  • Builds capacity within the school by working with classroom teachers, and developing teacher skills in outdoor classroom management techniques and in gardening.
  • Maintains the garden, coordinating volunteers and working with the community and the school district.

Job Responsibilities:

  • Facilitate garden lessons and garden maintenance, working 6 hours per day
  • Manage the school garden, plan and prepare for garden work activities, manage planting schedule, ensure availability of tools and other necessary materials
  • Maintain open garden time schedule for teachers
  • Attend occasional school wide staff meetings
  • Coordinate community garden events to bring students, families, teachers and community members together
  • Maintain school garden social media presence working with the school media person
  • Supports preparation and set-up of seasonal weekly/bi-weekly school “farmer’s market”
  • Help maintain outdoor kitchen and helps plan events with staff, students and/or parents

Desired Skills and Experience:

  • Knowledge of and/or interest in the following: environmental science, health and nutrition, food systems, food access, nutrition, botany, resource conservation, cooking, and social justice
  • Familiarity and/or interest in the following : Permaculture, 4-season food production, California Native Plants and Ecology, Plant Propagation, Organic Pest Management, Orchard Management, and the Bio-intensive Method
  • At least 2-3 years of facilitation or teaching experience with youth aged 5-12
  • Ability to work with diverse populations including youth and adults
  • Strong oral and written communication skills, including public speaking skills
  • Ability to work independently and be flexible

How to apply:

Please send a email, with School Garden Assistant Educator in the subject line, to the following email addresses.

Beth Stoep – garden coordinator, (707-765-4301)

Jeff Williamson – principal, (707-765-4301)

The position is now open. We anticipate filling the position in early August.

Waterwise School Garden MiniGrant

School Garden Network and Harmony Farm Supply are dedicated to supporting water conservation in school gardens! In a new collaboration we are pleased to announce a new mini-grant-“WATER-WISE SCHOOL GARDENS”.

Eligible SGN member schools will receive a free irrigation design, installation support and up to $400 in funding for a drip irrigation system!!  Irrigation systems will include battery operated timers, electric anti-siphon valves and a shut off valve to isolate the system.

Irrigation systems to be installed by volunteers and teen members of our SchoolGardenCorp!

In order to qualify, schools must be an SGN member school by completing the Membership Form. Once your school has completed the membership process SGN will send your school an account application for Harmony Farm Supply.

School gardens may apply for a –“WATER-WISE SCHOOL GARDENS” mini grant once these two steps are completed. School gardens will be required to provide principal and maintenance signature on the WATERWISE mini- grant application and supply a detailed map for design. Details in the application.

Download a Waterwise School Garden application here:   WATER_application

Questions?  Contact Lauren at

Join SGN on July 16th at Bacigalupi Winery for a lovely summer evening of Food, Wine and Fun!

The Bacigalupi Family Winery is in its 5th year producing its Annual Designate Tasting Event and this year have generously chosen the School Garden Network as the nonprofit recipient of event proceeds!

The event will include a very special and limited tasting featuring wines produced exclusively from Bacigalupi Vineyards. All wineries are hand selected and excel in producing wines that express the true terroir of their vineyards. Enjoy a varietal food pairing featuring local favorite Stark & Co. Catering and live music. Commemorative logo glass included.​

School Garden Network will be there with a well curated silent auction and information about new ways to join our organization in helping to establish and maintain school gardens throughout Sonoma County.

Participating wineries include:
Gary Farrell, Cast Wines, Dutcher Crossing, Edge Hill, Eleven Eleven, Flannagan, Matrix, Venge Vineyards, Modus Operandi, TVine Cellars, Jaclynn Renee Wines, Kobler Estate Winery, Montagu Wines, Williams Selyem, Climats du couchant and more!

Event details
Date and Time: Saturday July 16th from 4:00-7:00 p.m.
Location: Bacigalupi Vineyards Tasting Room
4353 Westside Road Healdsburg, CA 95448
Email questions to


Milkweed and Purple Needle Grass for School Gardens

Hi all!

I purchased 2 flats of native Slender leaved milkweed grown by the students at Grace HighSchool. Plant at least 6  milkweed with Tithonia, a favorite nectar plant of Monarchs and you are sure to attract monarchs to your garden. Create and register your site as  a Monarch Way station!

Marlena garden coordinator at Grace also donated 2  flats of Purple Needle grass, Stipa pulchra, California’s state grass. This is a bunch grass that can handle poor shallow soils and clay. Best planted with other perennials and wildflowers.

Contact me before June 11th  if you would like to purchase milkweed or pick up some free grasses!




Sabrina Howell, owner of Santa Rosa’s newest nursery, Wild Toad Nursery, is holding a workshop on providing water for wildlife just in time for those summer garden projects. Owner and presenter Sabrina Howell is a Certified California Naturalist, author, horticulturalist and has worked as Garden Teacher and presenter with the US Fish & Wildlife.

“Everyone is drawn to water,” says Howell. “There is something magical about the sight and sound of water. It’s not complicated to have a water feature. It just takes a little know-how and I have that to share.” Howell has been ponding for more than fifteen years and has plenty of learning experiences to draw from. “If you are interested in attracting wildlife, a water feature is the way to go. Water is one of the quickly disappearing, basic elements that wildlife need. A homeowner can make a big difference with even a small water feature. It’s really fun!”

The workshop will answer all your questions about mosquito and algae control, water usage and unanticipated questions that an experienced ponder has to share. The workshop will cover water features that do not use much water and compliment different garden styles, explain how to build various types of water features and how to avoid common mistakes.

The class will be held at Wild Toad Nursery, which shares space with West County Oasis Bamboo Garden. Wild Toad Nursery specializes in plants for ponds, plants for pollinators and plants for people. A personalized tour of the Bamboo Garden after the workshop is optional. Advanced registration is $30, $35 at the door.

For registration and additional information check the website, call 707-529-5261 or email