Greetings <<First Name>>, Find educational garden tips, upcoming events, grant resources, program updates, and more in this issue of the Life Lab Garden Times.
The Garden Times - Life Lab's Newsletter - Spring 2013

Rainbow Chard has rainbow roots, as seen in our root view box!
See more garden design ideas in our archived School Garden Design Webinar.
Find root view box plans in The Growing Classroom Activity Guide.

Life Lab

Life Lab Newsletter - May 2013

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In This Issue

Program Updates
What We Have Been Up To Since Our Last Newsletter
Meet our Senior Program Associate - Amber Turpin and her baby Hazel
Update on the California School Garden Training Program
California FoodCorps Update
Vote on the Top Ten of Garden-based Learning
FoodWhat Teens Bring Learning to the Farmers' Market
Life Lab in the Press
End of the School Year Sale 10% Off

Garden Tips and Educator Resources
School Garden Summer Care
Farm and Garden Jokes
Recipe: Nasturtium Pesto

Upcoming Events
Fall Garden Classroom Workshops
Garden Classes with The Friends of the UCSC Farm & Garden

Share Our News With Friends
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What We Have Been Up To Since Our December Newsletter

1,085 elementary students have participated in Garden Classroom Field Trips.
30 environmental education interns are bringing learning to life in the garden.
"Food,What?!" brought on 60 local teens for our spring program and 9 junior staff.
281 adults were inspired by Life Lab at 10 off-site workshops and presentations.
141 educators were trained at Life Lab's Garden Classroom.

Meet Amber Turpin and Our Newest Officemate, Baby Hazel

Working at Life Lab since 2010, Amber focuses on communications, events and finance in support of all of our programs. Now she has a co-worker that helps remind her to take breaks from the computer and strolls on the farm, too. Hazel Sonial Stimpson was born on 9/4/12 and brings some great chubby-cheeked joy to the office. In our latest extended staff profile, Amber writes: 

Last harvest season brought us an amazing bounty, including our baby daughter, Hazel. By this harvest, she may have a couple teeth to sink into those tomatoes, and her very favorite thing is to watch the trees.

Read more about Amber.

California School Garden Training Program Update

Since the launch of our statewide California School Garden Training Series in January 2012, our team has trained 101 teachers and community members in Creating and Sustaining School Gardens. Additionally, we have trained 82 new trainers to replicate this workshop, and awarded 30 mini-grants for new trainers to host Creating and Sustaining Your School Garden (CSYSG) workshops across the state during this school year! 

CSYSG mini-grant funded trainings are happening across the state and so far over 250 people have been trained at 11 workshops. 102 of these workshop participants stated their goal was to create a new garden and 90% of them said the workshop made them feel confident to do so!

Find all the training materials for this workshop and search for upcoming CSYSG workshops at:

FoodCorpsLife Lab is Bringing FoodCorps to California

Life Lab and the Community Alliance with Family Farmers are proud to be the statewide hosts for FoodCorps in California. Launched nationally in 2011, FoodCorps works to connect kids to real food and help them grow up healthy. California is slated to have 12 service members starting a year of public service this summer, working with local partner sites on projects related to FoodCorps's  three-ingredient recipe for healthy kids. FoodCorps service members:

  • Teach kids about what healthy food is and where it comes from
  • Build and tend school gardens
  • Bring high-quality local food into public school cafeterias
We look forward to working with FoodCorps and CAFF for a successful launch this season and to grow this program in future years. Check out this year's service sites at

Help Us Choose the Top Ten of Garden-based Education! 

We have been collecting your stories, quotes, and phrases that demonstrate why farm or garden-based education is important.
See the entries here and vote for the ones you like

FoodWhat Teens Bring Learning to Life at the Farmers' Market

Do you know how to make flower flavored ice cream? Have you experienced cabbage magic? You could find out at the Santa Cruz Farmers' Market! FoodWhat is partnering with the FoodShed Project on a mission to get the Santa Cruz community more involved with the local farmers' market. A project of the Santa Cruz Community Farmers' Market, the Foodshed Project is running an educational series on the second Wednesday of every month from June through October to bring even more life to the downtown market. Our youth assist in cooking demonstrations with local chefs to bring delicious snacks to the market-goers. The FoodWhat youth are also hired to help run Pop Up Breakfasts. Starting June 1, six incredible farm-to table multi-course breakfasts will be served up at Santa Cruz Markets.
Learn more at

Life Lab in the Press

Helping Turn Teachers into Gardeners, Washington Post - March 26, 2013
Educating the educators: Life Lab looks to introduce teachers to the merits of gardening, Santa Cruz Sentinel - April 13, 2013
Small Hands, Big Garden insert created by national syndicator Homestyle Magazine - April 19th, 2013

Garden Tips and Educator Resources

School Garden Summer Care

With proper planning, communication, and design, a beautiful and bountiful garden will be awaiting your students this fall! Read our 2003 newsletter article Summer Vacation for Your Garden, which has been updated to include a great new resource entitled Summer in the School Garden: A Resource for Working with Volunteers to Maintain your School Garden.

Farm and Garden Jokes

What garden educator doesn't need some corny jokes in their back pocket? See our recent post of more than 25 jokes and add your own to our list. Why was the tomato blushing? Find out at

Recipe: Nasturtium Pesto

This pesto can be a spread on sandwiches, used as a sauce for your pasta, a marinade on chicken or fish, or a fun addition to your breakfast eggs! Try to pick the smaller, dark green leaves for this as they have the biggest peppery flavor. Thanks to the Garden School Foundation for this tasty recipe:

2 cups packed nasturtium leaves, plus a handful of nasturtium flowers
1-2 cloves garlic
1/2 cup walnuts
juice of 1/2 large lemon
3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
Put everything but the salt and pepper into a food processor and mix until smooth.  Add salt and pepper to taste and enjoy!
**Note: You can freeze this pesto for future use...that is if you have any leftover

View and download more garden recipes

 10% Off All Life Lab Publications and Garden Sign Designs

Kids Garden Activity CardsAnother year of school garden instruction is coming to a close. Thanks for bringing learning to life in the garden!

Thinking about new ideas and materials for summer and fall? We have lots of them for you in our online store!

Have funds available to spend before the end of June? We'll help you make them go a long way!

10% off everything at

Use the code end-of-school at check out to apply this discount.
Coupon expires on 6/20/2013


Events and Workshops

Garden Classroom Educator Workshops

Plant It, Grow It, Eat It! - Garden-Enhanced Nutrition Education (Two-Day Version) Saturday - Sunday, July 27-28, 2013

Sowing the Seeds of Wonder: Discovering the Garden in Early Childhood Education Saturday, September 21, 2013 

The Growing Classroom: An Introduction to Garden-Based Learning Thursday - Friday, October 3-4, 2013

Plant It, Grow It, Eat It! - Garden-Enhanced Nutrition Education (Fall Version) Thursday, October 10, 2013

Santa Cruz School Food and Garden Tour Friday, October 11, 2013

Learn more about Life Lab Workshops

Friends of the UCSC Farm and Garden Events

Thu 5/16/2013: Strawberries, Justice, and Seeding Change on the Central Coast
Sun 6/9/2013: Selecting, Growing and Arranging Cut Flowers
Sun 6/23/2013: Poetry and Music in the Garden
Sat 7/27/2013: Summer Fruit Tree Pruning
Sun 8/25/2013: Fall Gardening Workshop
Learn more

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Life Lab is now a member of, a wonderful charitable web site that lets you raise money for Life Lab every time you search the web! After a quick and easy free registration, just designate Life Lab as your charity of choice, and then start searching. We will receive a penny per search, which really adds up these days! And you can raise even more for Life Lab through GoodShop offers discount coupons from thousands of online businesses, which also donate 1% to 6% of each purchase to charity. Just start your online shopping from or, better yet, use the easy toolbar in your browser, and see the donations add up for Life Lab at no cost to you! Eating out? has you covered, too. Check out first, then use all three and we will all see the power of community as many little actions add up to big impacts.

Grants for School Gardens

The California School Garden Network Grants and Fundraising Page lists some of the best garden-based learning grant resources plus much more to help your program raise funds.

Life Lab posts grant oppotunities that come across our desktops on Facebook. Scroll through our posts and look for "GRANT Opportunity"

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