Maricopa County: School and Community Gardens
University of Arizona Maricopa County Cooperative Extension
How do I get started?
If you are planning to start a school garden or have recently been given responsibility for your school garden, then this is where you need to start. It will will be important that you think about some initial planning steps and who you want on board to support the school garden. The information here will also help you look at different ways to financially sustain the school garden as well as think about the importance of food safety.
Start with a Committee:
Ask anyone involved with a successful school garden program and they will tell you many helping hands will make your school garden project easier to implement, maintain, and keep it sustainable for future school kids to enjoy for many years. So before you can put the shovel to the ground, it's important to find other like-minded individuals in your school community interested in helping out. This includes parents, teachers, administration and school maintenance. From this larger group you can start to create your school garden committee to help organize, tackle and share the load of starting and maintaining your school garden. Most committees are between 6-12 members, depending on garden project size and goals, and ideally should be diverse, to help give your committee the resources and flexibility to create your school garden.
Additional information on school garden committees:
Creating and Using a School Garden as an Outdoor Classroom Handout - Montana State University
Garden Committee Responsibilities - Common Threads Farm
Forming a Garden Committee - Kids Gardening .org
The University of Arizona, Maricopa County Master Gardeners have an active presence in School and Community Gardens in the County. To continue to grow and serve the members of our County better, the Master Gardeners have developed a map of current Seed Libraries, School Gardens and Community Gardens in Maricopa County.