Save the Date for the 2019 Starting and Sustaining a School Garden Conference

As the arrival of seed catalogs turn your thoughts towards spring, be sure to save the date of May 10, 2019 for the Starting and Sustaining a School Garden conference! Registration for the conference will be available by mid-January 2019.

School gardens can spring up anywhere – a schoolyard, an empty lot, a rooftop, even a parking lot. They are a powerful tool to connect youth to the natural world and beyond, regardless of setting, demographics or learning style. Be prepared to help make those connections by attending the 2019 Starting and Sustaining a School Garden conference.

Seasonal Learning in the Garden will be the theme for the conference to assist educators in coordinating their curriculum with what is going on in the garden. There will be break-out sessions by season and by grade level, and all the different activities will be connected to the Next Generation Science Standards or NGSS.

We have a content-packed and hands-on fun day planned for all. Dr. Norm Lownds, Director of the 4-H Children’s Garden will return to the conference this year with a session on Technology in the Garden. There will also be break-out sessions on Seed Starting, Garden Planning, Indoor Growing and much more!

The conference will be at the beautiful Michigan State University Tollgate Education Center and Farm, located at 28115 Meadowbrook Road, Novi, MI 48377. A limited number of partial scholarships are available. Contact Kristine Hahn at 248-802-4590 or for a scholarship application, any questions about Starting and Sustaining a School Garden Conference, or to schedule your own school garden site visit or a professional development session at your school. Hope you can join us for lots of fun and learning on May 10, 2019 at Tollgate!

This article was published by Michigan State University Extension and the staff in the Community Food Systems Workgroup who support Farm to School activities including school gardens. For more information, visit To have a digest of information delivered straight to your email inbox, visit To contact an expert in your area, visit, or call 888-MSUE4MI (888-678-3464).

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