School Garden Week of February 5th, 2024

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!

Send me some pics!  I know we have some growing going on right now!

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



Outside in the raised beds:

It is Harvest Week!!  We have great weather to get outside with your kiddos and take a harvest.  Make sure that you try to do this around mid-day,  do not try to open the cover if it is frozen underneath so it does not rip, and then replace the cover when you are done.

If you were unable to plant any kale or spinach seeds outside in the fall, you can try sowing some this week.  Make sure to water the seeds after you plant and then consider one more watering before the end of the week, especially if the rain chances decrease that are predicted.

This week:

  • Monday – too cold today to harvest,  good chance later in week.
  • Tuesday – potential harvest around mid-day,  make sure cover is not frozen.
  • Wednesday – potential harvest around mid-day,  make sure cover is not frozen.
  • Thursday and Friday – looking like they may be great harvest days!

Have questions about how your plants are doing or if they are big enough to harvest?  Just send me questions and pictures to

Inside under LED lights:  

This month’s seed starting under LED lights is collard greens.   If you and your kiddos really liked the bok choy and you have the space under your lights and have some bok choy seed left then you can plant that as well. It can be a little crowded under the lights right now!  Make sure you have some space to start your collard greens however as they will need started indoors now for a spring harvest.   Email questions to me at

We have been creating videos to support this project and have 4 done so far at our OSU Extension County YouTube channel.  We get lots of questions about seed starting under the LED lights.  Check out the video below for a super quick, kid-safe (can show in class to your kiddos) seed starting video using the materials you have for the pilot:  The same technique as for kale in the video below works for spinach, collard greens, lettuce, and bok choy.  



All of the seedlings we are planting now can will be able to be transplanted outside later on, or if you want to let them grow indoors until they are harvested you can do that too.  Collard greens may get too large under the lights so plan on a later transplant date.

Inside in the Aerogarden:

Hopefully your tomatoes are doing great.  Let me know if you have any questions or problems.  CLICK HERE for the Aerogarden planting guide. If you need tomato pods then contact Katie.

Basic Aerogarden Tomato Planting

  • Plant just one tomato pod in the Aerogarden Harvest.
  • Keep the small plastic dome on the pod until germination.
  • Remove the small plastic dome after the seed sprouts.
  • Thin to only one tomato plant in the system.
  • Keep the other holes covered with the black or white plastic caps to keep light from entering into the reservoir with the nutrient system.


One tomato pod in an Aerogarden Harvest centered in the middle to get the most light, with the rest of the holes capped off.


If you started in January you should have some tomato seedlings coming up.  Make sure to thin to one tomato plant per pod and with the Aerogarden Harvest, it is best to only have one in the system although I have seen some teachers do two.  Keep in mind if you keep two growing, they will use up water twice as fast and you will need to check and add water twice as much!

Here is an Aerogarden Harvest with one tomato right in the middle under the lights looking great. All the rest of the holes are capped.

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.

Do you need seeds or seed starter for your project?  Contact Katie.

Any questions about your growing?  Email me at

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