December 15th, 2016

In the middle of the Mojave Desert, in the midst of "Sin City," surrounded by numerous "food deserts," Green Our Planet has helped establish during the last three and a half years:

100 school gardens
serving 50,000 students,
an 800+-page PreK to 5th grade Outdoor Garden Classroom Curriculum (first of its kind in Nevada),
a chef to school program
a farmers market program
(125 student-run farmers markets were held in 2016)
a hydroponics program,
a teacher-training program
(nearly 400 teachers trained in 2016)
Las Vegas' first annual school garden conference
(now entering its fourth year),
a water conservation program 
(that helps the CCSD save 18-20 million gallons of water per year)
(and helped fund) Nevada's first vocational special needs garden curriculum for middle and high school students

Thank you to our partners Garden Farms and Los Vaqueros, to the CCSD, to our platinum sponsor, Switch--and to all of the teachers, students, individuals, sponsors and organizations that helped make all of this possible!


From The Staff At Green Our Planet
Teacher Training at Crestwood Elementary
The last of three fall sessions of Green Our Planet's Teacher Training was a great success!
During October and November, teachers from across the CCSD attended Green Our Planet's Teacher Training at Crestwood Elementary School. The teachers used Green Our Planet's Outdoor Garden Classroom Pre-K through 5th grade curriculum and were taught by the same CCSD teachers who created the curriculum in 2014. In 2016, more than 300 teachers were trained.  Thank you to Switch and to the Whole Kids Foundation for sponsoring the training and to the Regenerative Education (REC) teachers for running the excellent training sessions!
Hydroponics Units Delivered to Two Elementary Schools
Last November, Green Our Planet and its partner, Los Vaqueros, delivered the first two vertical hydroponic units to Walter Bracken and Beckley Elementary Schools, both schools that Green Our Planet has been working with for several years. The units are part of a new initiative that the two nonprofits have been collaborating on since last spring--to design, build, deliver and help run similar systems at 10 CCSD elementary schools. Los Vaqueros, a local nonprofit, funded and built the units. Green Our Planet will now help the schools integrate them into their science and nutrition lessons. The two schools plan to use the increased produce to provide vegetables for a supplemental salad bar, thus helping to change student eating habits at lunchtime. 
Twenty New School Gardens Built in 2016
In 2016, Green Our Planet and its partners, Garden Farms, collaborated on building twenty new school gardens in the Clark County School District. In the last three and a half years, the two organizations have collaborated on funding and building 100 school gardens in the CCSD. Above: volunteers from KB Home assist in building a new school garden at Liberty High School; below left, Scherkenbach ES; below right, Doral Academy-Fire Mesa.
3rd Annual School Garden Conference 
Held at the Innevation Center and sponsored by Switch.
Garden Tip

By Tiffany Whisenant of Garden Farms
With freezing winter temps threatening to wreak havoc in our gardens this week, many of us have been rushing to harvest the fruits of fall before it is too late. At a Boys and Girls Club in Henderson, one 5'x10' garden bed yielded 66 pounds of green tomatoes! Needless to say, there are many grateful gardeners wondering what to do in the kitchen with such a bounty. Try green tomatoes with your eggs for a tasty breakfast, fry them and layer them on a sandwich for lunch, or even make pie with them. If all else fails, they make wonderful gifts! 

Make sure to harvest your summer and fall fruit before a freeze, and cover sensitive winter crops like lettuces, peas and herbs with row cover or a sheet. A good rule of thumb is the thicker the leaf, the better able it is to handle cold weather, and may even taste better because of it! Cabbages, spinach, kale and root crops don't need protection and thrive this time of year, pulling though the cold and offering an abundance soon as well.

The entire garden will benefit from a layer of mulch or row cover on top of the soil during cold weather. Don't forget to protect exposed irrigation pipes by covering them with pipe insulation or, in a pinch, an old blanket or pool noodle. Citrus trees also need protection from the cold; wrap young trees with burlap or even christmas lights (the old-style C7, not LED), and make sure to harvest citrus fruits before a freeze. 

Wishing you all a lovely winter, in the garden and in the kitchen!

Upcoming Events

Mark the Date!
April 29th, 2017 The Fourth Annual Green Our Planet School Garden Conferenceu’d like to do a presentation)
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