School Garden Week of March 6th, 2023

This is a weekly look at what is happening in the school garden to assist teacher educators engage their students in agriculture.  It can be used by garden students of all ages however!

CCS Teachers!   Send me pics of what you are growing, good and bad and let me know if is OK to publish them.  I want to share examples with your colleagues. 

Next up a weather report to get us through the week for planning on our season extension:

It looks like we have some cold weather (for the garden,  normal for March) for the next ten days or so.  I will keep watch very closely to see when we can get a window of time to plant seeds outdoors in the raised beds.  Take a look at your seeds:  we will be looking to plant some of the things that we may not have gotten a chance to plant in fall like radishes and peas later on in March.

However, If you have extra spinach and kale seeds and did not have a chance to plant last fall, you could direct sow some seed outside under the row cover this week as well.  That will give you a chance at a spring harvest to share with your kiddos. They germinate well in cold. 

Outside in the raised beds:

If you want to check your plants make sure it is a warmer day,  close to 50 degrees.  It is best to open the covers closer to the middle of the day when it is a little warmer, and then close the covers up tight after you view plants or take a harvest in order to build the heat back up under the cover to protect the plants.  You will need to make sure the row cover is in place Friday for sure as we get cold again this weekend.  Make sure you do not have plastic over your row cover if you were using that to provide extra protection as we will have needed rainfall for the plants and the rain will pass right through row cover, but not plastic. If you have been using plastic as supplemental heat you will probably need to water as it may be dry in the raised bed. Make sure to fertilize when you water as the outdoor plants will need the feeding. 

Here is my lettuce growing under cover. I direct seeded spinach about ten days ago and have good germination. I need to get out to thin the seedlings soon.

Inside in the Aerogarden:

Last month we planted tomatoes in the Aerogarden.   Follow the instructions for tomato planting carefully.  Make sure you are checking water levels and fertilize as needed.  Make sure you check water levels each Friday before you leave school so that the water level does not drop too low over the weekend.  CLICK HERE for the Aerogarden planting guide.

I check the water every other day right now as the tomatoes are growing fast. I need to move the lights similarly. I pollinate and prune according to the Aerogarden tomato care guide linked below.



Make sure to cover up your unused holes in your Aerogarden. That keeps fungal disease from growing in the nutrient solution.

Tomatoes are growing fast in the Aerogarden right now. Make sure to check your water level and fertilize as needed to keep the plants healthy. Keep your lights about 1-2″ from the leaves to avoid leggy plants.  Remember If you started two plants in your Aerogardens, you will need to thin to only one plant or they will overwhelm the Aerogarden eventually. You will need to start pollinating your tomato flowers once they appear.  You will also need to do some pruning of your tomato plants to keep them growing correctly.  All of that is detailed very well in the Aerogarden Planting Guide linked below:

Aerogarden Tomato Guide  –> tomato_planting_guide


The Aerogarden website has a tremendous amount of content to assist with maintenance of the units, troubleshooting problems, or how to take care of the plants in the system.  CHECK IT OUT if you are having problems. Make sure to check your water level every week one or two times and add as needed.  Add fertilizer when needed according to the directions.   Email me if you have questions about that.


Inside under LED lights:  Review the video below to make sure you are thinning your seedlings under the LED lights as well as for the planting technique for broccoli if you need a refresher.  

This month’s seed starting under LED lights is broccoli.  Let me know if you are having any problems or if you have some great pics to share.  Start fertilizing using bottom watering technique once you have some leaves on the plant.

The lettuce started last month is looking good.  You can harvest the larger leaves off the plant to taste with your students,  you can harvest the whole baby head of lettuce to taste with students, or you can let it grow a little bit longer.  Make sure you continue to fertilize every two weeks as they grow.  The bigger they get the more you will have to water.

Make sure that you fertilize your outside plants every two weeks mixed in water according to the label.  Contact Katie if you need more fertilizer.  It is the pink crystal one for indoor seed starting and watering plants outside,  not the Aerogarden fertilizer.

This week is not ideal for transplanting.  If you really need to get plants outside due to space issues under your lights then email me and we will come up with a plan. 

Any questions?  Feel free to email me at

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