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FSC School Garden Resource Page

Welcome to DeKalb County Public School’s School Garden resource page. Fernbank Science Center has offered the DeKalb School Master Gardener program since 2004, supporting dozens of schools in developing their gardens as outdoor learning laboratories. To meet increasing demand for school garden support and professional development, FSC will maintain this page with up-to-date information about seasonal garden tasks, grants, professional development opportunities and lesson ideas.  

Why School Gardens?

Children and Nature Network says it best: “Spending time in nature enhances educational outcomes by improving children’s academic performance, focus, behavior and love of learning.” This info-graphic includes references to research that shows the positive impacts of using school gardens and other natural learning environments as teaching tools


DeKalb County has an excellent climate for nearly year-round gardening, and school gardens can help build school community and encourage students (and teachers!) to eat fresh fruits and vegetables. School gardens also provide habitat for critical pollinator species like Monarch butterflies and native bees.

Finally, a school garden is an outdoor laboratory, providing curricular connections to all subjects and opportunities for experimentation and STEAM projects. School gardens bring learning to life.



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Professional Development Opportunities

Essential Fall Garden Tasks

Clear Out Summer Veggies and Weeds

Tomatoes, sweet potatoes, peppers and winter squash may still be going strong. If you have enough garden space to leave healthy, producing summer veggies that can hang on through September, then let them be. If your summer veggies have slowed production and don’t look so good, pull them out. Vegetable pests and diseases can survive a compost pile, therefore these old plants are best either trashed or thrown in the woods rather than added to compost piles that will be eventually used in the garden.

Amend Garden Soil With Compost

Plant Fall Veggies

    - Check Georgia Organic’s School Garden Planting and Harvest Calendar

    - Direct seed into garden through mid-September: Beets, Collards, Kale, Radish, Spinach, Lettuce

    - Transplant seedlings through mid-September: Broccoli, Cauliflower, Lettuce, Kale, Swiss Chard

Fall Cover Crops

If you have bare soil anywhere, consider planting a fall cover crop to improve soil and reduce pests/disease. PRO-TIP: buy wheat or rye and sprouting clover in bulk at your local natural foods store. A little clover seed goes a long way!

Green Teacher

Green Teacher Magazine

Green Teacher Magazine is a non-profit organization dedicated to helping educators, both inside and outside of schools, promote environmental awareness among young people aged 6-19.  The quarterly Green Teacher magazine offers perspectives on the role of education in creating a sustainable future, practical articles and ready to use activities for various age levels, and reviews of dozens of new educational resources.

DeKalb teachers have free access!  

Contact Kyla Van Deusen for subscription information. or 678-874-7138

DeKalb School Garden Blog

Click Here For The Full Blog Page

Grant Opportunities
DCSD Grants Departmentincludes grant-writing tips, available external grants and guidelines for submitting grant applications.

Environmental Education in Georgia keeps a thorough list of grants and contests

Grant writing tips from Whole Kids Foundation
DeKalb Gardens in the News

Aug 25 2018: Sagamore Hills STEM teacher Stephanie Spencer in the AJC

July 20 2018: Eldridge E Miller Gets Outdoor Classroom and Greenhouse, The DeKalb Free Press

April 6 2018: Students Planting Orchards at Lithonia Schools, Crossroads News

Wadsworth STEM Garden, DCSD Trusted News

Nov 25 2016: DeKalb Gets Golden Radish Award for Farm to School, Crossroads News

Sept 14, 2014 Druid Hills HS Eagle Scout Builds Garden Beds, Crossroads News

April 12, 2013 Toney Elementary Student Starts a Garden, Crossroads News

Need More Information?

Contact Kyla Van Deusen at or 678-874-7138