Friday, December 30, 2011

Healthy Breakfast 4 Kids grant opportunity!!

The Healthy Breakfast-4-Kids (HB4K) goal is to create and improve access to breakfast in schools nationwide as a means to lessen the huge negative impact of hungry children across our nation. In 2012 Food Family Farming Foundation (F3) and Walmart Foundation are partnering to grant 117 $2500 equipment grants to rural high needs schools for the purpose of assisting in the successful establishment of universal breakfast in the classroom programs. The grants will allow schools to order $2500 worth of food service smallwares or equipment to assist in establishing a universal breakfast program via an online order with our partner Tundra Specialties. As part of the grant program, F3 will create universal breakfast implementation resources to be available to all schools via our program, The Lunch Box.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Ag Council Seeks Student Essays on Agriculture

The Agriculture Council of America is asking 9th- to 12th- grade students to submit original, 450- word essay or a two- minute video essay about the importance of agriculture.  This year's theme is "American Agriculture: Feeding the Future, Filling the Gaps" and the deadline is February 1, 2012.

Entrants may choose to either write  an essay and/or create a vdeo focusing on how today's growers are overcoming challenges to provide a safe, stable food supply and sustain the significant role agriculture plays in everyday life.

The national written essay winner receives a $1,000 prize and a round-trip ticket to Washington, D.C., for recognition during the Celebration of Ag Dinner held March 8.  The video essay winner wins a $1,000 prize, and the winning video will be played during the Celebration of Ag Dinner.

All written entries should be sent to:
2012 Ag Day Essay Contest
Agriculture Council of America
11020 King Street, Suite 205
Overland Park, KS 66210
Or submit by email:

Students may upload video essays at and mail the entries on a compact disc to the above address.

Visit to read all of the official rules and for more details regarding entry applications.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

A Community of Gardeners Video

"A Community of Gardeners" explores the vital role of seven community gardens in Washington, D.C. and shows how these green spaces are changing people's lives, their communities and their environment.
Watch this video to learn more about these community gardens:

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Obesity Rate Falls for New York Schoolchildren

The number of obese New York City schoolchildren fell by 5.5 percent over five years, federal and city officials said recently, offering a glimmer of optimism about one of the country’s intractable health scourges.
The decline, documented by annual fitness exams given to most of the city’s kindergarten through eighth-grade students, was the biggest reported by any large city. Over all, the rate of obesity dropped in New York City to 207 children per 1,000 in the 2010-11 school year, down from 219 five years earlier, meaning that 20.7 percent were still considered obese.
“This comes after decades of relentless increases,” Dr. Thomas A. Farley, the city’s health commissioner, said Thursday. While the 5.5 percent drop may seem slight, he said, “What’s impressive is the fact that it’s falling at all.”

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Latest Edition of our School Gardens Newsletter

Check out our December Eat Smart... It's in the Garden Newsletter. This months Newsletter is full of information and recaps from all the great gardening projects from across the State! Everyone had a successful fall and we look forward to all the exciting events coming up this winter and spring!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

How Designing Smarter Farmers' Markets Will Help Our Cities Survive

A hundred years ago, 38% of Americans lived and worked on the farm; today, it is less than two percent. The impact of that change has been massive; the economist Joseph Stiglitz writes in Vanity Fair this month that the last Great Depression was caused by industrialization of agriculture, a "structural change in the real economy."
Agriculture had been a victim of its own success. In 1900, it took a large portion of the U.S. population to produce enough food for the country as a whole. Then came a revolution in agriculture that would gain pace throughout the century—better seeds, better fertilizer, better farming practices, along with widespread mechanization. Today, 2 percent of Americans produce more food than we can consume.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Michelle Obama Helps Children Across America Set Jumping Jack Record

As part of her child obesity project, first lady Michelle Obama announced yesterday that students, teachers, and parents -- joining with the organization National Geographic Kids -- broke the Guinness world record for most people doing jumping jacks in a 24-hour period.

Mrs. Obama's team pointed out that more than 300,265 people did jumping jacks during ceremonies around the world on Oct. 11-12.

Click link to watch video:

Monday, December 12, 2011

Free Tasting Lessons

Free bilingual fruit and vegetable tasting lessons provide opportunities for children to explore, learn about, and taste varieties of fruits and vegetables. Tasting lessons require no cooking and minimal food preparation. Students learn to use descriptive language, expand vocabulary, exercise choice, and articulate personal preferences.

Click here to download activities:

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

'I Can Grow' Youth Garden Award

Schools, youth groups, community centers, public garden organizations, and others interested in supporting urban youth garden installations in the U.S. are eligible to apply for a 2012 'I Can Grow' Youth Garden Award from Burpee Home Gardens.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Whole Kids Foundation School Garden Grants

School gardens are a vital educational tool. Every seed planted sprouts a new opportunity for kids to cultivate healthy eating habits. Teaching kids to garden helps them learn about complex topics like sustainability and conservation, food systems and community awareness. Not to mention an appreciation for food from seed to plate.

Thanks to the generosity of Whole Foods Market customers, Whole Kids Foundation is able to provide grants of $2,000 to support school garden projects in the US, UK and Canada.

Deadline: December 31, 2011

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

Buy local. Eat local. Enjoy local.

Hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving and enjoys local produce in their dishes!

Captain Planet Foundation Grant Opportunity

The Captain Planet Foundation primarily makes grants to U.S.-based schools and organizations with an annual operating budget of less than $3 million. Grants are made for activities that conform to the mission of the Captain Planet Foundation which is to: promote and support high-quality educational programs that enable children and youth to understand and appreciate our world through learning experiences that engage them in active, hands-on projects to improve the environment in their schools and communities.

Grants from the Captain Planet Foundation are intended to:* serve as a catalyst to getting environment-based education in schools, and* inspire youth and communities to participate in community service through environmental stewardship activities. CPF grants are limited to $2,500 and preferential consideration is given to applicants who have secured at least 50% matching or in-kind funding for their program.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

2012 Youth Garden Grants

NGA is delighted to announce that The Home Depot Garden Club continues as the Youth Garden Grants (YGG) sponsor. In its 29-year history, the YGG program has helped more than 1.3 million youngsters by supporting youth gardening programs. Thanks to the generosity of The Home Depot Garden Club, 5 winners will receive gift cards valued at $1,000, and 95 winners will receive $500 gift cards, for the purchase of gardening materials and supplies specific to the needs of their program from their local Home Depot store.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Grant Opportunity: Disney's Planet Challenge

Disney's Planet Challenge (DPC) is a project-based learning environmental competition for classrooms across the United States. DPC teaches kids about science and conservation while empowering them to make a positive impact on their communities and planet.

Disney's Planet Challenge is brought to you by Disney's Friends for Change, a multi-platform initiative that inspires kids and families around the world to help people, communities, and the planet.

DPC offers two tracks of competition:

Friday, November 18, 2011

Buy Local During the Holiday Season

Thanksgiving is almost here and Christmas is close behind. In order to prepare for the great meals to be had, think before you visit the grocery store down the street. Could you not fill your ingredient list with local produce? Check to see what you can buy locally to support local farmers in your area! What a great way to have a South Carolina Holiday Season!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

School Grant: It's All About the Fruits and Veggies!

Passionate about supporting schools and communities by promoting health, wellness and physical activities, Jamba Juice is sponsoring the It’s All About the Fruit and Veggies grant program to provide schools with $500 in gardening supplies and curriculum.
Grant Application Deadline: February 15, 2012

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Burgess Community Looking Toward the Future

The Burgess Community, near Myrtle Beach, SC is making plans for its future. Natives remember the area dominant by agriculture and farming. Over the years, population has increased and trends have changed. To keep the tradition alive from years past, the community is doing their part in reliving what Burgess used to be. Burgess Elementary School is leading the way, teaching their students the history of the community through the Farm to School Grant Program.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Calculate Nutritional Value of Your Meals

Here is a fun, interactive way to make sure you are making healthy choices at meal times. Could be a great opportunity to get your children interested in the nutritional value of what they are eating. This may encourage them to eat more fruits and vegetables!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Gardening Tip: Preparing Your Plants For Winter

With the chance of frost looming in our future, now is a great time to get a head start on cutting back your plants. Many plants, especially tropical ones, get really messy after a freeze. The foliage turns mushy and makes the plants difficult to cut back! So spend some time in the garden each day prepping for winter. A little effort now will save you time in the long run.

Banning Soda in Schools Has Little Impact

State laws banning the sale of soda but not of other sweetened drinks in schools have had almost no impact on students’ consumption of sugary drinks. Should schools ban all sugary drinks to encourage students to drink more water??

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Youth High School Essay Contest

The Garden Club of South Carolina is sponsoring a youth high school essay contest. This year's theme is, " The Benefits of Community Gardens." This is a great opportunity for our South Carolina students to share the importance of community gardens and supporting local produce. The winner will receive a State Certificate and a cash award of $250. The winning essay will be published in the fall issue of The South Carolina Gardener. All essays must be submitted by December 10, 2011. See link for more details:

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Fall Nature Quest

Join Carolina Children's Garden for their Fall Nature Quest THIS Saturday (November 12, 2011) from 10:30 am- 12:00 pm. Enjoy the fall colors while participating in a fun and exciting scavenger hunt. Learn to identify common trees and discover why leaves change color in the fall. This activity is for children in grades 2-5. Cost is $2 per child.
Carolina Children's Garden is at the Clemson University Sandhill Research and Education Center on 900 Clemson Road, Columbia, SC 29229.

Which has greater importance: Cost or Nutrition?

Check out this article in the New York Times discussing the government's new school lunch proposal and the response it has been receiving.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Grant Opportunity to Launch School Salad Bar Program

The National Council of Fruit and Vegetable Nutrition Coordinators is pleased to announce a grant program to support state Fruit and Vegetable Nutrition Coordinators in their work to help launch school salad bar programs. The purpose of this grant program is two pronged:
1) Gather experiences from state health agencies and their partners on ways to increase salad bars in schools which may impact fruit and vegetable access and consumption, and
2) Gain a greater understanding of the Fruit and Vegetable Nutrition Coordinators’ role and training needs in supporting the salad bars to schools campaign.
This grant program will contribute to the work of the Let’s Move Salad Bars to Schools! initiative.

For more information on how to apply please visit:

School Gardens in Progress

Burgess Elementary School in Myrtle Beach, SC is underway with their community garden. The students have recieved help from their teachers and volunteers while preparing the beds and planting fruits and vegetables. The students also planted our State Vegetable, Collard Greens! To see more pictures of their garden visit the Burgess Elementary School facebook page:

Monday, October 17, 2011

School Gardens Grant Resource List

Are you interested in building a school garden and could use a little financial help? Or maybe you already have a school garden and wish to expand. Click here for a list of grants available specifically for school gardens or sites that list school garden grants on a continuing basis.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Bird's Eye "Dinner Garden" programs

Bird's Eye is sponsoring a grant program called Dinner Garden where seeds are given away to families to help them grown seeds to grow fresh vegetables as part of their family meals. Check it out!! http://http//

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Fresh from the garden at Chicago's O'Hare airport!

Check out this article and video about a new program that's growing fresh veggies in Chicago's airport.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Legare Farms' Pumpkin Patch Open in October

Charleston County’s Original and Oldest Pumpkin Patch at Legare Farms will be open to the public this year from October 3 to October 31. Call 843-559-0788 or email for more info or to make reservations for a school field trip!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Gourmet Gardeners

Did you know that Whole Foods has a blog dedicated to gardens? Check it out at The blog follows their novice Gourmet Gardeners in their quest for home-grown healthy food, with the help of Whole Foods Market's exclusive Nutrient Dense Garden!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Free Seeds!

Operation Green Plant is giving away vegetable, flower and herb seeds. All you have to do is write a short letter describing your project, fill out the application, enclose a check for shipping and handling, and then send it off. Click here for more info!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Vote for School Gardens!!

If you'd like to see more school garden grants offered by the Whole Kids Foundation, vote today (Until Sept. 30) by visiting this site:!/wholekidsfoundation?sk=app_112655098840387

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Whole Kids Foundation Wants Your Input

5% of the purchase price of Whole Foods Market gift cards that were purchased through Living Social on September 13th will be donated to Whole Kids Foundation. Help decide how to allocate that cash! Cast your vote for one of the three programs, Teacher Nutrition Education, School Garden Grants or Salad Bars to Schools, by going to their Facebook page. Voting is open through September 30.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

School Gardens in England

Check out this article from the English newspaper Express and Star for great school garden tips!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Richland District 1 is participating in the 2011 national Farm-City Week this November 18-24. The topic for the 2011 Richland County Farm-City Week is Sustainable Agriculture. Click here to learn more about the K-12 competitions and how you can win!

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Friday, August 19, 2011

Whole Kids Foundation

Enter to receive a $2,000 grant for your school garden from the Whole Kids Foundation! School garden grant applications will be accepted through 5pm CST, December 31, 2011. Learn more about the application process here.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Grant Resources

The Children's Garden Network has a listing of potential grant sources for gardens. Check it out!!!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Children's Garden Network

This is a group that focuses on using gardens as an educational resource, nature resource, physical activity and healthy eating resource for kids!!! If you'd like more information, or if you'd like to register your garden with the "network", check out their site!!!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Love Your Veggies Blog!

Here's a blog site that has fun, helpful information about using fresh veggies and educating children about healthy eating habits :)

Friday, July 1, 2011

Boys and Girls Clubs start community gardens.

Amway has partnered with Boys & Girls clubs give $1 million dollars to build community gardens and into teach kids the value of food and nutrition. Check out this link for more information! Also, could this be something that YOUR community Boys & Girls Club could be eligible for? http://http//

Thursday, June 23, 2011

SC school gets runner-up in nation-wide recipe contest!

Congratulations to Mount Lebanon Elementary School in Pendleton! Their Crunchy Hawain Chicken Wrap recipe placed runner-up in the Firts Lady's Recipes for Helathy Kids contest.

Check out the link to read the article:

Friday, June 17, 2011

International Kitchen Garden Day - August 28, 2011!

Are you interested in celebrating healthy eating? Then you might want to participate in the International Kitchen Garden Day!! Visit this website to learn about how you can celebrate healthy eating of real foods on August 29, 2011!!!/event.php?eid=229104867100598

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

MyPlate inspires MyGarden!!

Here's an article discussing the new MyPlate USDA guidance and how it can correspond with a gardening program!!;email

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Students visit organic farm!!

After a year of learning, students visit the Love is Love Farm to pick blueberries! Each student focused on using the five senses, ending with the best one - taste!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Decatur Farm to School kicks off their program by serving kale!! Check out the link below to watch the video!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

The Founding Fathers recognized the importance of being environmentally friendly! George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, and James Madison considered themselves gardeners, rather than politicians. Find out more by clicking on the link:,0,4593400.story

Thursday, May 26, 2011

SC School named in Top 10!!

Memminger Elementary School in Charleston, SC, is listed 7th in the Top 10 for the Root4Kids contest!

The Root 4 Kids contest launched April 5th and runs through May 31st. The school that receives the most sign-ups will win their choice of a school garden or a Farm-to-School program. To generate votes for your school go to:

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

SC schools are creating healthier lunch menus.

District meals will not only look out for overweight students, but healthy students too! Anderson county has begun revising their lunch menus to ensure healthy kids are getting the nutrition they need to stay active.


Friday, May 20, 2011

"Let's Move" campaign recognizes Pendleton, SC, school!

Michelle Obama's "Let's Move" campaign recently visited Mount Lebanon Elementary in Pendleton to taste-test their Crunchy Hawaiian Chicken Wrap -- one of 15 recipes chosen out of 340 entries in the Recipes for Healthy Kids competition! The wrap contains seasoned chicken, sweet pineapple and crunch shredded veggies, topped with poppy-seed dressing.

Vote at the Recipes for Healthy Kids website for Mount Lebanon's wrap as the "Popular Choice." Prizes range from $1,000 to $3,000!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

SC Farm to School Pilot Program in the News!

Columbia news station WLTX (a CBS affiliate) visited the recent Farm to School...and Beyond workshop that was held on Thursday, April 28 at the SC State Farmers Market! As well as taking video footage of the conference and interviewing statewide Farm to School coordinator Holly Harring, the news crew visited a farm and spoke with Matt Warren of W.P. Rawl Farms. Watch the video to learn more!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Slow Food in Schools Grant Available for the Upstate!

Calling all slow food fans!

The South Carolina Upstate chapter of Slow Food USA has a grant available that will offer funds to
a school (K-12) that would like to start a school garden program, or who would like to offer the "Slow Food in Schools" program. Teachers, principals and anyone associated with a school can apply, but note that this is only available to schools within the Upstate, which includes the counties of Greenville, Spartanburg, Anderson, Pickens, Cherokee, Oconee, Union, Laurens, Greenwood and Abbeville.

The proposed program
should be diverse, but directed to offer all children an opportunity to explore from where their food comes, who grows it, how to prepare it, and the importance of sharing it with friends and family. The project should be sustainable, and should be planned to be able to continue for an extended period of time.

The application deadline is Wednesday, June 1, 2011, and for more information or to apply, please visit the SC Upstate's Slow Food chapter's website.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

"Yes to" School Gardens!

Skincare company Yes To... has just announced that they're giving away mini-grants to schools to be used for school gardens! From the company:
With a joint mission of giving kids fun and engaging ways to learn about nutrition and the importance of fruits and veggies, we will be giving away five $2,000 Seed Fund Grants in each participating Whole Foods region* to local schools, plus five $500 'Starter Garden' grants to schools nationwide! All Yes To products in participating Whole Foods stores are 20% off, and a portion of proceeds of all sales go to the Seed Fund!

Click over to the company's Facebook page to find out more and apply!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Apply for a school garden mini-grant!

The S.C. Farm Bureau Young Farmer and Rancher Committee is providing school garden mini-grants for 2012 in the amount of $500 to four South Carolina public or private schools next year, one in each of the Farm Bureau's districts. Find the application and more information at the Farm Bureau's website here -- the deadline to apply is Saturday, October 1.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Harvest of the Month!

Check out this website which has information and resources about starting your own school garden!

Friday, April 29, 2011

School Garden Resource!

Check out this website dedicated to Youth Gardens! It has a lot of great resources for school gardens, including lesson plans, materials, books, grant opportunities and more!!!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The History of School Gardens!

School gardens have existed as far back as the 15th century in Europe, and are not in fact the modern phenomenon we often imagine them to be.

In fact, the United States has a long history of school gardens in it's public school system. This video on YouTube by the Library of Congress, gives a great review of the history of School Gardens in the US.

It's definitely worth the watch and a great tool to share with students who are participating in a school garden program!