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					        Sprouting Education




Alex Bancroft, Friedel Pretorius, Lukas Jones and Maria Espanol
Table of Contents
Table of Contents ........................................................................................................................................... i
Table of Figures ............................................................................................................................................ iv
List of Tables ................................................................................................................................................. v
1      Problem Formulation ............................................................................................................................ 1
    1.1        Introduction .................................................................................................................................. 1
    1.2        Objective ....................................................................................................................................... 1
2      Problem Analysis and Literature Review .............................................................................................. 2
    2.1        Introduction .................................................................................................................................. 2
    2.2        Problem Analysis ........................................................................................................................... 2
       2.2.1          Specifications ........................................................................................................................ 2

       2.2.2          Considerations ...................................................................................................................... 2

       2.2.3          Criteria................................................................................................................................... 2

       2.2.4          Usage..................................................................................................................................... 3

       2.2.5          Production Volume ............................................................................................................... 3

    2.3        Literature Review .......................................................................................................................... 4
       2.3.1          Structural Materials .............................................................................................................. 4

       2.3.2          Insulation............................................................................................................................... 4

       2.3.3          Flooring ................................................................................................................................. 5

       2.3.4          Rainwater Catchment System ............................................................................................... 5

       2.3.5          Plant Life................................................................................................................................ 6

       2.3.6          Humidity and Temperature................................................................................................... 7

       2.3.7          Types of Food ........................................................................................................................ 8

       2.3.8          Planting Techniques: ............................................................................................................. 9

       2.3.9          Soils ..................................................................................................................................... 11

       2.3.10         Gardening with Children ..................................................................................................... 12

       2.3.11         4th-8th Grade Science Standards Relevant to Gardening ..................................................... 13

                                                                                i
      2.3.12        Client Expectations.............................................................................................................. 14

3     Alternative Solutions........................................................................................................................... 15
    3.1      Introduction ................................................................................................................................ 15
    3.2      Brainstorming.............................................................................................................................. 15
      3.2.1         Brainstorm #1...................................................................................................................... 15

      3.2.2         Brainstorm #2...................................................................................................................... 16

      3.2.3         Brainstorm #3...................................................................................................................... 17

    3.3      Alternative Solutions................................................................................................................... 18
      3.3.1         Greenhouse ......................................................................................................................... 18

      3.3.2         Raised Bed with Greenhouse Roof ..................................................................................... 19

      3.3.3         Garden Beds ........................................................................................................................ 20

      3.3.4         Garden Train ....................................................................................................................... 21

      3.3.5         1/3 -1/3 - 1/3 Garden .......................................................................................................... 22

      3.3.6         Small Individual Plot Pot Garden ........................................................................................ 23

4     Decision Phase .................................................................................................................................... 25
    4.1      Introduction ................................................................................................................................ 25
    4.2      Criteria Definition........................................................................................................................ 25
    4.3      Decision Process.......................................................................................................................... 25
    4.4      Final Decision Justification .......................................................................................................... 28
5     Specification of Solution ..................................................................................................................... 29
    5.1      Introduction ................................................................................................................................ 29
    5.2      Solution Description.................................................................................................................... 29
    5.3      Cost Analysis ............................................................................................................................... 30
      5.3.1         Costs .................................................................................................................................... 30

      5.3.2         Maintenance Costs.............................................................................................................. 30

      5.3.3         Labor ................................................................................................................................... 30

    5.4      Design.......................................................................................................................................... 31
      5.4.1         Garden Designs ................................................................................................................... 31


                                                                              ii
       5.4.2          Educational Purpose ........................................................................................................... 31

   5.5         Construction................................................................................................................................ 31
       5.5.1          Constructing the Hoop House Pallet Garden ...................................................................... 31

       5.5.2          Constructing the Kiddie Pool Garden.................................................................................. 38

       5.5.3          Constructing the Water Catchment System ....................................................................... 39

   5.6         Maintenance ............................................................................................................................... 41
   5.7         Instructions for Implementation and Use ................................................................................... 42
       5.7.1          Implementation .................................................................................................................. 42

       5.7.2          Use ...................................................................................................................................... 42

   5.8         Results ......................................................................................................................................... 43
References .................................................................................................................................................... a




                                                                                iii
Table of Figures
Figure 1-1: Black box model .......................................................................................................................... 1
Figure 2-1: Rainwater catchment system (IslandNet 2009) ......................................................................... 5
Figure 2-2: Photosynthesis (Photosynthesis 2011) ....................................................................................... 6
Figure 2-3: Broccoli ....................................................................................................................................... 8
Figure 2-4: Plants grown in rows ................................................................................................................ 10
Figure 2-5: Wide row planting .................................................................................................................... 10
Figure 2-6: Raised bed................................................................................................................................. 11
Figure 2-7: Soil texture ................................................................................................................................ 12
Figure 3-1: Brainstorm #1 ........................................................................................................................... 15
Figure 3-2: Brainstorm #2 ........................................................................................................................... 16
Figure 3-3: Brainstorm #3 ........................................................................................................................... 17
Figure 3-4: The Greenhouse ....................................................................................................................... 18
Figure 3-5: The Raised Bed with Greenhouse Roof .................................................................................... 19
Figure 3-6: Garden “Beds” (Photo by Lukas Jones)..................................................................................... 20
Figure 3-7: Garden Train (Photo by Lukas Jones) ....................................................................................... 21
Figure 3-8: The 1/3 -1/3 - 1/3 Garden......................................................................................................... 22
Figure 3-9: Small Individual Plot Pot Garden .............................................................................................. 24
Figure 5-1: CAD Image of Garden Representation...................................................................................... 29
Figure 5-2: Created by Lukas Jones ............................................................................................................. 30
Figure 5-3: Measuring and cutting pallets .................................................................................................. 33
Figure 5-4: Painting cut pallets ................................................................................................................... 34
Figure 5-5: Corner and side joints ............................................................................................................... 34
Figure 5-6: Pounding in rebar ..................................................................................................................... 35
Figure 5-7 Completed Frame ...................................................................................................................... 36
Figure 5-8 Geotextile lining ......................................................................................................................... 36
Figure 5-9 Securing Plastic .......................................................................................................................... 37
Figure 5-10: Bungee cord holding down plastic ......................................................................................... 38
Figure 5-11: Kiddie Pool Gardens................................................................................................................ 39
Figure 5-12: Rainwater Catchment System ................................................................................................ 40
Figure 5-13 Metal Strap Securing Barrel ..................................................................................................... 41




                                                                             iv
List of Tables
Table 1: Weighted Criteria .......................................................................................................................... 26
Table 2: Delphi Method .............................................................................................................................. 27




                                                                           v
1 Problem Formulation
1.1 Introduction
In Section 1, Sprouting Education formulates the design problem. Locally Delicious, in spring 2011, wants
a school garden that will empower and inspire students to grow their own food. The garden must be
easily replicated by schools around the U.S. and should endure ten to fifteen years of use. The objectives
and outcomes of the school garden design are presented in a black box model.


1.2 Objective
The objective of Sprouting Education is to design and build an interactive garden at a school for students
to learn the benefits and values of sustainable agriculture. The garden must be easily reproduced in
schools around the U.S. The black box model, shown in figure 1.1 defines the problem and demonstrates
the expected impact of the final solution after the design process.




    IN                                          Black                                             OUT
Youth in school don’t
                                                Box                                               Youth in school are
know how to garden                                                                                empowered to
and don’t think about                                                                             garden and think
where their food                                                                                  about where their
comes from.                                                                                       food comes from.
 Figure 1-1: Black box model demonstrates the design objective, the design process, and the outcome of the final solution




                                                            1
2 Problem Analysis and Literature Review
2.1 Introduction
The problem analysis provides a list of problems to solve in order to complete our objective statement.
The section includes topics on project specifications, considerations, criteria, usage, and production
volume

The literature review is an accumulation of categorized research done on the school garden project. The
section includes topics on materials, plant life, types of food, planting techniques, soil, gardening with
children, science curriculum standards, and client expectations.


2.2 Problem Analysis
2.2.1 Specifications
Specifications are the clients’ requirements for the design project. Specifications for this project include:

    Size: Area of 12 x 15 square foot garden.
    Lifespan: 10-15 years.

2.2.2 Considerations
Considerations are the suggested requirements which coincide with the specifications and the general
aspects of the project. Considerations for this project are:

    Safety with kids; general construction and nearby tools.
    Maintenance during the summer.
    Design a garden to produce sellable foods.


2.2.3 Criteria
Criteria                                                  Constraints

    Learning Potential                                   The more interactive learning opportunities the
                                                          garden provides, the better



    Safety                                               The garden cannot pose any dangers to the people
                                                          gardening in it and must be child-safe




                                                      2
   Reproducibility                                     The garden must be easily recreated by schools
                                                        around the country



   Appeal to Youth                                     Students should find the garden entertaining and
                                                        aesthetically pleasing; they should want to
                                                        participate in it



   Cost                                                The garden should cost no more than the
                                                        budgeted amount



   Productivity                                        The garden should produce enough produce for
                                                        schools to feel it is worthwhile and for students to
                                                        be inspired by their efforts



   Plant Protection                                    Plants must be sheltered from vandalism,
                                                        playground activities, and animals



   Expandability                                       The more easily the garden can be made larger the
                                                        better


2.2.4 Usage
The usage depends on the school’s preference with regard to how much the teachers think the
student’s should work in the garden. Aside from the educational aspect, it should produce a harvest at
least once per academic year which can be consumed or sold for school profit. During the summer, the
garden will be maintained and prepared for the next academic year.

2.2.5 Production Volume
There will be only one garden for school use which will be produced and installed at the school location
provided to use by the client.




                                                    3
2.3 Literature Review
2.3.1 Structural Materials
The structural integrity of the garden and its components are essential to building a garden capable of
withstanding daily abuse as well as creating a long-lasting structure. An important criterion in building
the garden is longevity, meaning the structure should be built to last ten to fifteen years.

2.3.1.1 Aluminum
When exposed to air, aluminum does not oxidize progressively because a hard, thin oxide coating forms
on the surface and seals the metal from its environment (Hall & Gigalo 2010). In general, the high
ductility and low yield strength of aluminum alloys make them appropriate for almost all operations
(Vijayaram 2008). Applying paint on vinyl and aluminum siding is actually easier and less labor-intensive
than its application on wood, masonry, or hardboard surfaces. Because they do not retain moisture,
these sidings dry off quickly and are easier to clean. (Benjamin Moore & Co. 2011).

2.3.1.2 Galvanized Steel
Galvanized steel is rust resistant due to the addition of zinc, although it will eventually wear away and
become prone to oxidization. Steel is universally used for structural purposes due to its great strength.
(state some advantages and disadvantages)

2.3.1.3 Wood
Most woods are prone to rot, mold and fungi without proper treatment. Two notable exceptions to this
are redwood and cedar. Dark heartwood will resist rot and insects, but cream-colored sapwood can be
seriously damaged in just a couple of years. "Common" redwood, often sold as "construction common,"
is partially composed of sapwood (DoMinioN Fences 2006). (state some advantages and disadvantages)

2.3.2 Insulation
The design of modern greenhouses is based on a compromise between a maximized transmission of
solar radiation and a minimized heat loss (Swinkels, Sonnevile & Bot 2001). (more)

2.3.2.1 Fiberglass
Fiberglass sheeting is a strong, long-lasting material with moderate light penetration. It offers a slightly
higher hail resistance to that of other fiberglass shingles (Koontz 1991). Fiberglass panels average an 8-
to 10-year lifespan, install easily, come in flat or corrugated variations and are inexpensive (Valdez
2010). It is very susceptible to break down by ultra violet (UV) light which causes the fibers to swell
resulting in a significant decrease in light transmission (Aggie 2009). This will reduce the amount of solar
energy the plants receive, thus potentially stunting growth.

2.3.2.2 Polycarbonate Acrylics
Polycarbonate plastic acrylics are excellent insulators capable of saving 30% of energy (WVU 2010) when
double-layered. Polycarbonate plastic acrylics are often protected by a warranty of up to ten years. The
acrylic layer is a long-life, non-yellowing material; the polycarbonate layer normally yellows faster than


                                                     4
the acrylic layer, but usually is protected by a UV-inhibiting coating on the exposed surface (WVU 2010).
Acrylic is expensive but typically provides a ten year, or greater, warranty from some manufacturers;
although many advantages exist such as high light transmittance, high impact resistance, and great
strength, costs have proven prohibitive in most cases (OSU 2011).

2.3.2.3 Plastics Sheeting
The light transmission of film-plastics, which is a plastic rolled into 3 or 6 mil thick sheets, is often
comparable to glass. Vinyl costs two to five times more than polyethylene. When properly installed, they
can last as long as five years. Because it attracts dust and dirt from the air, it has to be washed from
time to time (Types of Greenhouses 2011). PVCs cost much more than greenhouse grade plastics. Sheets
can be bought in widths of four to six feet.

Most currently available are Poly-Ethylene film, PE film, will last for approximately two years before it
needs to be replaced. Although this frequent maintenance is costly, the reduced initial investment
compared to PVC, as well as the limited structural components needed to support this covering, has
made PE most economical for producers (Aggie 2009).

2.3.3 Flooring
Permanent foundations should be provided for glass, fiberglass, or the double-layer rigid-plastic sheet
materials(Repeat key words? W21) (WVU 2010). A concrete, gravel, or stone walkway 24 to 36 inches
wide can be built for easy access to plants (WVU 2010). The rest of the floor is covered by several inches
of gravel for drainage of excess water. Most home greenhouses require a poured concrete
foundation similar to those in residential houses. Quonset greenhouses with pipe frames and a plastic
cover use posts driven into the ground (WVU 2010).

2.3.4 Rainwater Catchment System
Rainwater catchment systems are relatively cheap to build, free to use and inexpensive to maintain. The
system can be easily reconfigure or expand (IslandNet 2009). It is a reliable (support this), clean and
organized method for using water in the garden as shown in figure 2.3.3. (more)




              Figure 2-1: A clean and organized rainwater catchment system (IslandNet 2009)

                                                     5
2.3.5 Plant Life
This section discusses the requirements for plant life and some of the mechanics in with regards to how
plants work.

2.3.5.1 Precipitation
In order to successfully create a functioning garden, it is essential to know the average amount of water
that will reach the plants. The amount of rainfall changes according to the seasons desired for planting
and the location of that planting (Citation). High altitudes also contain precipitation issues like snow
which is detrimental to the survival of certain plants (Citation).

2.3.5.2 Water Requirements for Plant life
Water is an essential factor in plant growth; and is a critical component of photosynthesis, the process
by which plants manufacture their own food from carbon dioxide and water in the presence of light.
Water is one of the many factors that can limit plant growth (NRCS 2011).




                 Figure 2-2: role of water in basic photosynthesis (Photosynthesis 2011)

2.3.5.3 Seasonal Precipitation
Knowing the general amount of precipitation for different seasons is essential for preparing a watering
system for the garden. If rainfall is generally high in quantity, there is no need to use a lot of water for
watering the plants. However if there is too much precipitation, a regulatory system may need to be
implemented so the garden does not flood. If there is typically not much rainfall in the area, water from
the local water supply will need to be used to water plants.




                                                     6
2.3.6 Humidity and Temperature
Humidity is a measure of water vapor in the air. Temperature is the amount of the heat within a system
or substance.

2.3.6.1 Affect on Plant life
Plants respond to changes in humidity. “Transpiration of water vapor through leaf stomata depends on
the gradient of moisture between the leaf interior which is saturated and the overlying air, as well as the
availability of moisture in the soil. Lower atmospheric humidity causes greater transpiration rates in
plants. The transpiration rate is determined by a balance between the amount of energy available to
convert water from the liquid to vapor phase and the moisture gradient” (Seidel 2008). Temperature
varies directly with humidity so they both affect the plants when one changes.

2.3.6.2 Regulation
Temperature and humidity can be regulated for optimal plant growth. Some types of regulation in a
garden are: venting, water sprayers, insulation, fans and shading. Venting is used in greenhouses as a
way to release heat that is stored in the greenhouse and is accomplished by opening windows or
installing a vent(Citation). Water sprayers help regulate humidity by spraying moisture in the
air(Citation). Insulation is a material used to cover or surround an object or body to stop or slow down
heat loss(Citation). In the case of plants and gardening, insulation is used to reduce heat transfer in the
soil(Citation). Fans create air flow in greenhouses which helps air into the greenhouses as well as venting
heat and humidity. Shading blocks out the sun decreasing heat, but also slowing down photosynthesis.

2.3.6.3 Weeds/Pests
Weeds are unwanted and undesirable plants in a garden. These plants grow quickly and take nutrients
and water away from the crops growing nearby, unless some prevention method is put in place. Pests
are unwanted and undesirable organisms that cause harm to the garden by competing with plants for
nutrients, unless preventative measures are set up and maintained.

2.3.6.4 Pest Prevention
Pests can be prevented through a variety of methods. The most effective method for pest management
is called (IPM) Integrated Pest Management (EPA 2005). IPM utilizes the following methods to prevent
pests. Some of these management methods are: 1) removing pest hiding places like wood piles,
diseased plants, and fallen fruit (EPA 2005) 2) removing pest breeding sights like pet droppings, trash,
and puddles of water(EPA 2005) 3) Keeping a constant soil temperature and moisture in the soil are
other alternatives (EPA 2005) 4) alternating plants in the garden so pests who only like one kind of plant
don’t spread to them all (EPA 2005) 5) keeping the plants healthy because healthy plants fight off pests
better then sick ones do (EPA 2005). Studies yielded information that organic fertilizer is superior to
synthetic fertilizer. When used for two years plants in organic fertilizer hosted fewer aphids, a type of
pest, than plants in synthetic fertilizer (Morales 2000).




                                                    7
2.3.6.5 Weed Prevention
Two effective methods of preventing weeds are by using mulch and by manual removal. Mulching
involves placing a protective layer of nutritional substances around your plants. The mulch both
prevents weeds and insulates the soil (EPA 2005). Manual removal requires a basic knowledge of weeds
and enough time to accomplish. Chemicals are also used to get rid of weeds, but are not recommended
for people who are producing produce that is meant to be eaten.

2.3.7 Types of Food
2.3.7.1 Vegetables

2.3.7.1.1 Broccoli
Broccoli is a cool weather crop. Fall crops of broccoli can survive the harsh weathers of the first frost and
even the first snowfall, as illustrated in Figure 1. The vegetable tastes best when it is grown in cool and
cold weather. Broccoli grows slowly in hot weather and forms only a few heads during this time. Sowing
seeds of broccoli should be done as soon as the ground can be worked which can be done before the
last frost, freeze, or snow (How to Grow Broccoli Plants 2011). Seeds are planted ¼ inch deep, fifteen to
eighteen inches apart and kept moist until the first sight of emerging seedlings. The best watering
system for broccoli is a soaker house or dripping system, because water sitting on top of a broccoli head
can lead to disease (National Gardening Association (U.S.) 1986).




        Figure 2-3: Broccoli can survive through the snow while still planted on the ground. (Veggies in Snow 2008)

2.3.7.1.2 Squash
Squash can be grown by bush or vine. Bush type squash tend to spread out three to four feet wide. Vine
type squash needs about six to eight feet of area to grow, but space can be reduced by using trellis or
vegetable netting to grow vines upward (Tips for Growing Squash 2010). Squash is planted during the
spring and harvested during the fall. The vegetable will thrive through most any soil, but will need daily
watering especially during summer heat buildup. Squash is a warm loving plant and cannot tolerate
much frost. Squash produces a large harvest; the more you pick the squash, the more the plant will



                                                            8
produce. Pinching back some of the blossoms can regulate growth production (Tips for Growing Squash
2010).

2.3.7.1.3 Chard
Chard is an easy-to-grow plant which can withhold most harsh weather. Chard can tolerate light frost
and summer heat making them a simple plant to grow throughout all seasons (Pleasant 2009). Chard
should be sowed into the garden two weeks before the last frost date during the spring (Pleasant 2009).
A bed mixed with compost, fertilizer and soil will help grow flourish the growth of chard. The seeds
should be planted half an inch deep and three inches apart (Pleasant 2009). The soil must be cool and
moist for healthy growing conditions, along with often watering the plant. Chard can vary in taste
dependant on surrounding weather conditions (Pleasant 2009).

2.3.7.2 Fruit:

2.3.7.2.1 Apple Trees
An apple tree should be planted with at least one other type of apple tree of a compatible variety to
insure cross pollination (How to Grow and Care for an Apple Tree 2010). Without the other tree, a single
apple tree will not grow any fruit on its own. Apple trees should be planted two feet deep into the
ground and twice the diameter of the roots around late fall or early spring. Once the tree is developed, it
should be pruned or trimmed once a year to keep its shape and cut off dead, diseased, or overcrowded
branches. While the apples are still small, it is important to start thinning the fruit because apples tend
to grow more fruit than their limbs can handle. Thinning the fruit will keep the weight down and
produce better quality fruit. (How to Grow and Care for an Apple Tree 2010).

2.3.8 Planting Techniques:
2.3.8.1 Row Planting
When first planting a row of seeds it is important to first mark and outline the rows in the garden. A
planting line or even string and stakes can help lay out rows. Along the rows there should be furrows or
trenches to drain out the water (National Gardening Association (U.S.) 1986). Shallow furrows are made
by laying a rake or hoe along the side of the row and pressing the tool down into the soil. Deeper
furrows are created by dragging the end of the how or rake alone the row. Seeds should be sowed
generously in case some seeds fail to sprout and one can insure an adequate amount of plant growth.
Seeds are spaced out evenly to assure proper growth for each plant to avoid overcrowding, shown in
Figure 2-1. Large seeds such as peas and beans are easy to spread out. Smaller seeds such as carrots
should be mixed with fine sand then sprinkled into the furrow (National Gardening Association (U.S.)
1986). Seeds should be covered with fine soil and patted down with a hoe to contain seeds in soil.




                                                    9
     Figure 2-4: Plants grown in rows are organized to insure proper growth for each type of plant. (Rowplanter 2009)

2.3.8.2 Wide Row Planting
The wider rows are used for planting a larger scale quantity of crop, illustrated through Figure 2-2. Just
as regular row planting, the first step is to mark and outline the rows. The widths of wide row planting
are usually around 10 to 16 inches (National Gardening Association (U.S.) 1986). These rows should be
smoothed out until leveled. Seeds are sprinkled out on the entire bed, landing about one to two inches
apart from each other (National Gardening Association (U.S.) 1986). Outside soil from planting area is
then raked and smoothed over the seeds. The soil and seeds are then patted down together to maintain
firm contact between soil and seeds.




  Figure 2-5: Wide row planting is necessary for larger amounts of crop to space out the many plants to a healthy growth.
                                                (YETTER 4 Row Sower 2006)

2.3.8.3 Bed Planting
Bed planting is planting a secured raised garden a few inches off the ground to contain greater soil
depth and concentrated nutrients, shown in Figure 2-3. The soil inside the raised bed is to be first
accumulated before constructing the wooden perimeter to secure the garden. The first layer of soil is

                                                            10
loosened soil from the ground using a rototiller. The next layer should be some type of organic matter
such as decomposed manure or compost building up soil to be four to six inches off the ground
(National Gardening Association (U.S.) 1986). After a season or two of success with raised bed soil, it is
the time to construct the barrier. Old planks, beams, landscape timbers or stone blocks can be used. The
most common wooden barrier should be treated with copper naphthenate to maintain material
(National Gardening Association (U.S.) 1986).

2.3.8.4 Kiddie Pools
Kiddie pools are easy to make gardens that can be implemented by any yard owner. The typical 4’
diameter and 3’’ high kiddie pool provides as a transferable raised bed one can easily tend to. Kiddie
pools sell at fair prices in department stores or can be simply found in most backyards. The plastic used
for the generic kiddie pools is strong enough to uphold soil containment and the plastic is not toxic to
the soil or the plants (Grant 2009). Holes are drilled at the bottom or along the sides of the bottom of
the kiddie pools for drainage (Grant 2009). By adding soil to the pool completes the garden. Kiddie pools
are great starter gardens for young plants and vegetables (Grant 2009). They offer a child aesthetic
appeal and are simply accessible for a child’s gardening.




Figure 2-6: Raised bed planting is a customary style of planting. The raised bed secures the plants with enriched soil and has
                         easy drainage for excess water. Used mostly as a home garden. (Joe 2010)

2.3.9 Soils
2.3.9.1 Texture and Structure
Soil is divided between three main textural categories which are sand, clay and silt. Sand is the largest
particle while clay as the smallest (P. Bhargavi 2010). Most soils contain a mix of particle soil, and soil
scientists have determined subcategories to describe them, as shown in Figure 2.3.8.3. Soil texture
influences the amount of water, air and nutrients the soil can hold (P. Bhargavi 2010). Clay soils can hold
a lot of water but not much air, while sandy soils can hold a lot of air but not much water. Loam is a
thriving mixture between sand and clay which provides good aeration, drainage, and moisture and
nutrient retention (National Gardening Association (U.S.) 1986).



                                                             11
 Figure 2-7: Soil texture diagram showing different combination of each type of soil; sand, clay and silt. (National Gardening
                                                   Association (U.S.) 1986)

2.3.9.2 Soil pH
The pH scale ranges from 0 to 14. The lower the pH means acidic soil, the higher pH means alkaline and
the midpoint, seven, classify neutral. The pH number scale has a standard deviation of 10, such that
each value on the scale is ten times greater or less than the number before or after the value (National
Gardening Association (U.S.) 1986). Therefore, changing the pH even slightly can cause great change to
the soil. The suitable pH level for gardening fruits and vegetables are between six and seven. Within this
range, the soil can assist plants to take in nutrients such as potassium and phosphorous (National
Gardening Association (U.S.) 1986). Alongside, this range of pH can maintain the solubility of minerals
such as manganese to non-toxic levels.

2.3.10             Gardening with Children
Many gardens have been designed for children to learn from and play in. Eberbach studied children’s
preferences of design elements in gardens with the idea that for children to enjoy learning and
participating in gardening, then the garden should be appealing to them(Eberbach1988) Sedbrook
recommends planting seeds that mature quickly to give children a more immediate reward for their
work, thus keeping them enthusiastic (Sedbrook 2010). Planting flowers adds color to intrigue children,
but all plants used should be are non-toxic. Also, keeping the space a child is responsible for around 3sq
ft. guarantees that they are able to manage it on their own (Sedbrook 2010).




                                                              12
2.3.10.1 Individual Plot Gardens
Many educational gardens are designed in rows of individual plots for children. The size of these plots
depends on the space available and number of children. Eberbach (1988) claims that such designs are
very space efficient, allow children to more immediately and easily see their own progress, and allow
children to feel more responsibility and connectedness to gardening (Eberbach 1988).

2.3.10.2 Communal Gardens
Communal gardening designs promote more skills such as sharing responsibilities and working together
(Eberbach 1988). Communal gardens allow for less structured designs, ones that get away from grid
setups, which may be found more inviting by children (Eberbach 1988).

2.3.10.3 Child Preferred Garden Elements
Eberbach conducted a study to find what elements children preferred in gardens. She identifies in her
study that paved paths between beds to make the garden easily explored and wheelchair accessible
(Eberbach 1988). Eberbach (1988) also concluded that children are drawn to bright color, flowers, and
ornaments, and prefer interactive elements in their garden, varied topography, shade trees, water
elements, rocks, and terraces. Children have an eye for beauty and prefer colorful vegetation, especially
the colors red, orange, and yellow (Eberbach 1988).

2.3.11          4th-8th Grade Science Standards Relevant to Gardening
This section explains the child curriculum from fourth to eight grade with regards to gardening.

2.3.11.1 Fourth Grade
Fourth grade life science curriculum focuses on how plants are a vital part of the biosphere. Fourth-
graders learn about food chains that plants are the fundamental food source, the process of organic
matter decomposing, ecosystems and how different organisms rely on each other, and that certain
plants and animals survive better in certain environments. Fourth-graders also learn about the
observation and prediction process, taking measurements, following written instructions, and repeating
trials. (CDE 2009)

2.3.11.2 Fifth Grade
Fifth-grade students learn about the structures of plants that allow them to respire, take in nutrients,
and photosynthesize. Fifth-graders also learn about the process of human digestion and nutrient
absorption in the body. Students are taught skills to read weather maps and predict local weather. Fifth-
graders learn to classify objects based on characteristics, how to form a testable question, and how to
perform a basic experiment. (CDE 2009)

2.3.11.3 Sixth Grade
Sixth-grade students learn how organisms in an ecosystem exchange energy and the sources of energy.
Sixth-graders learn how to develop a hypothesis, create an experiment, and how to give an oral
presentation of the conclusion. (CDE 2009)


                                                   13
2.3.11.4 Seventh Grade
Seventh-grade students learn about organisms at the cellular level, including parts of a cell and how cells
differentiate. Seventh-graders also learn the distinctive characteristics of plant cells, the anatomy and
physiology of plants, and the reproduction process of plants. Seventh graders learn about genetics and
that genes determine characteristic traits, and about the process of evolution. In experimentation,
seventh-graders learn how to create visual aids to convey data and how to research using a variety of
resources. (CDE 2009)

2.3.11.5 Eighth Grade
Eighth-graders learn about the chemistry of living organisms and how to design and run an extensive
experiment. (CDE 2009)

2.3.12          Client Expectations
Locally Delicious (Martha Haynes, Suzanne Simpson, and Personal Communication Feb. 17, 2011) is
looking for an educational garden that will inspire fourth through eighth grade students to start gardens
of their own. The garden should be sized around 12’x15’ and be planted with an assortment of fruit
trees, berry bushes, and vegetables. The client is not partial to a greenhouse, in-ground beds, or garden
boxes. The garden should be easily replicated and inexpensive, less than $300. The finished garden
should allow many opportunities for interactive learning. Locally Delicious wants the garden to be easily
replicated and be accompanied with detailed instructions for replicating. (Martha Haynes, Suzanne
Simpson, Personal Communication Feb. 17, 2011)




                                                    14
3 Alternative Solutions
3.1 Introduction
A series of three brainstorming sessions on alternative solutions were conducted by the Sprouting
Education team. The team meetings took the recorded criterion and team goal into consideration in
order to produce eight individual alternative solutions.


3.2 Brainstorming
The three brainstorming sessions were organized differently, two were held in a structured forum and
the latter was considered an unstructured brainstorm. The tenet which was flowing closely by the group
was the ‘hitchhiking’ of ideas to promote further in-depth discussion of solutions.

3.2.1 Brainstorm #1
Brainstorming session 1 was an unstructured brainstorm held in Science D room 17, on March 1st. Each
team member was given a dry-erase marker and allowed to draw or write down any ideas they had for
the garden on the board. We then looked at our ideas and explained them to each other. In the end, we
had a rich resource of ideas to pull from for our next steps.




                                        Figure 3-1: Brainstorm #1




                                                   15
3.2.2 Brainstorm #2
Brainstorming session 3 was a structured brainstorm held in the hallway of Science D on March 3rd. Our
goal of this brainstorm was to come up with elements for each alternative design. We separated each
element of the garden and then made a list of all the possible ways to create that element. When we
were finished, we assembled the different elements into various alternative designs.




                                         Figure 3-2: Brainstorm #2


                                                    16
3.2.3 Brainstorm #3
Brainstorm session 3 was a structured brainstorm session held in the Fishbowl in Science D on March 8th.
The goal of this brainstorming session was to develop our final design. We made a list of all the elements
we liked from our alternative solutions and looked to see how we could incorporate them. We listed the
pros and cons of each element and in the end came up with our final design.




                                          Figure 3-3: Brainstorm #3


                                                     17
3.3 Alternative Solutions
3.3.1 Greenhouse
The greenhouse solution works by creating an environment where a large range of flora will be able to
flourish along with appealing activities for primary school children. The entrance to the greenhouse,
which is especially wide in order to accommodate handicap students, is sealed by a plastic or fiberglass
door. Inside the structure, the flooring A will be covered with gravel to lessen the chance of mud and
create a sturdy base. To the left of the entrance a wide raised bed B will be in place to accommodate
larger plants with greater water requirements. To the right, a narrower bed C will be in place so that a
greater amount of plants are close and within reach of the children. At the rear of the greenhouse, a
locked storage unit D will be provided with gardening tools which can be unlocked with the aid of a
teacher. The plants will be individually watered with a rainwater catchment drip system in order to
promote the greatest efficiency of water use and utilize water resources without charging educational
sources. The rainwater will be collected from the greenhouse roof G, the school roof, or both and then
transferred into the storage tank. The water will be fed to the plants by gravity from the storage tank E.
This tank is able to meter the water level and top-off with a standard hose F if needed.




                                                         Figure 3-4: The Greenhouse

The Greenhouse is an insulated structure in which a variety of flora may develop. The reference letters in the diagram represent the following:
A, Flooring; B, Large Raised Bed; C, Small Raised Bed; D, Storage Unit; E, Water Storage Tank; F, Hose Inlet; G, Greenhouse Gutter; H, Plastic
Wall; I, Plexiglas or Fiberglass Roof. (Diagram by Alex Bancroft)

The structure is built with a metal frame and sealed H with either plastic sheeting or Plexiglas which
faces south to absorb the maximum seasonal sunlight. The roof I would be made of either fiberglass or
Plexiglas to prevent hail damage to the crop. The sides of the raised beds and the storage unit would

                                                                      18
have educational displays and information of plant life for children to read. The supervising teacher will
have access to a webcam which will give the children the ability to see the plants grow over time and
pan/zoom the webcam from the computer. Safety is of great concern in this solution; sharp corners,
large volumes of water, tools and heavy materials are all factors which are taken seriously.

3.3.2 Raised Bed with Greenhouse Roof
The raised bed garden with a greenhouse roof idea is a simple, cheap and efficient means of harvesting
large quantities of a variety of plants. There would be three greenhouses A placed side-by-side with a
wide walkway B to accommodate handicap students across the graveled base. The structure of the
greenhouse C would consist of multiple ABS plastic piping clamped into an arch with a 90 degree elbow.
A twelve foot length of plastic sheeting would then be secured on either ends of the arches to create a
roof. Water would be supplied to a large storage tank D via the school building rain gutter. This would
be gravity fed into underground ABS piping E routed to each individual garden bed. In case the rain
water storage level decreases, a metered hose F will supply a sufficient amount of water.




                                              Figure 3-5: The Raised Bed with Greenhouse Roof

The Raised Bed with Greenhouse Roof is a cost efficient means of operation a greenhouse. The reference letters in the diagram represent
the following: A, Raised Bed Gardens; B, Walkways; C, Structural Plastic Piping; D, Water Storage Tank; E, Gravity Fed Piping; F, Hose Inlet; G,
12ft Section of Piping; H, Air Exchange Vent; I, Plant Information Posters. (Diagram by Alex Bancroft)




                                                                      19
The garden beds are given water at a constant volume and pressure through twelve foot lengths of ABS
piping. Connected to the piping are nozzles for individual plants. The assembly is designed to trap in
heat but also allows for the exchange of air through end vents H. Decorations and information I
concerning the plant cycle will adorn the sides of the raised garden beds. The supervising teacher will
have access to a webcam J which will allow the children to see the plants grow over time as well as
pan/zoom the webcam from the computer. As previously stated, safety is of great concern in this
solution; sharp corners, large volumes of water, tools and heavy materials are all factors which are taken
seriously.

3.3.3 Garden Beds
The Garden “Beds” solution brings the bed aspect to life by putting vegetation into a structure giving the
appearance of actual beds. This structure is designed to appeal both to the imaginative and creative
mindsets of the children and inspire them to want to learn about gardening. The design incorporates
bedposts mounted with webcams which will be used to document the growth of the vegetation and
other educational aspects through time lapse photography. The teachers can then use these
photographs in their lessons. The garden comes equipped with measuring tools as an alternative
method to documenting the growth of the garden. A diagram with a list of different types of weeds
including pictures will be placed beside the garden in plain sight so students will understand what to get
rid of to protect the plants. The watering system is a watering can which will give the students the
hands on experience needed to acquire the agricultural skills necessary for sustaining a real garden.




                                Figure 3-6: Garden “Beds” (Photo by Lukas Jones)

                                                      20
The Garden “Beds” design is constructed with rocks (in this case bricks), cement and metal rods which
will be used for the purpose of webcam mounts and to give off the impression of bed posts. The sides
are painted to make the project both aesthetically pleasing and more appealing to children. The beds
are raised to protect from accidental trampling and the corners and edges will be rounded to keep the
children safe.

3.3.4 Garden Train
The “Garden Train” solution was designed to bring education and entertainment through an
aesthetically pleasing structure to create the perfect mix of work and play or even to turn work into
play. The design will host both educational and appealing aspects to the kids. The end of the train will
have a sliding panel that, when removed, reveals a see through surface exposing a labeled diagram of
both the roots and the soil composition. The sides will be painted to further appeal to the students. A
Webcam will be mounted on the head of the caboose facing the vegetation to document the growth
and other educational aspects of the garden. On the same note, measuring tools will be placed in the
garden to help measure the growth and other parts of the garden like soil temperature, soil acidity and
humidity. A labeled diagram of different types of weeds including names and pictures will be placed
next to the garden beds to help the students distinguish the plants that need to stay in from the plants
that will be harmful to the garden.




                                Figure 3-7: Garden Train (Photo by Lukas Jones)


                                                      21
The design, as seen in figure 5, will include a Caboose at the front which will followed by carts. Each Cart
along with the back of the caboose contains soil where there the plants will grow. The plants are
watered by a sprinkler system mounted on the side of each bed. Surrounding the Garden train will be a
variety of berry bushes. Child safety is of great concern in this design which is why wood will be sanded
to protect from splinters, Edges will be rounded so they are less harmful and tools will be locked up so
they can only be used under teacher supervision.

3.3.5 1/3 -1/3 - 1/3 Garden
The 1/3 -1/3 - 1/3 Garden, shown in Figure 3-1, is a variety of three different styles of garden beds. The
three types of gardens are a Raised Bed, Raised Bed with a Green House top, and an In-Ground garden.
Each garden is designed in a shape of rectangle, diamond, or an oval, with an area of 60 square feet
each. The oval shaped In-Ground garden is simply constructed of the existing ground soil at A. The
diamond shaped Raised Bed garden is constructed of lumber wood as a border, standing six inches high
at B with a cut out section, replaced with Plexiglas for children to see the plants’ root growth at B.1. The
rectangular shaped Raised Bed garden with a Green House top is constructed of plywood borders,
standing at six inches tall at C covered with a simple green house top made of PVC pipes arched across
the bed and enclosed with plastic sheeting at C.1. Inside the Green House top will have a protected web
cam to record plant growth for children viewing at C.2. Along the sides of the Raised Bed gardens are
colorful paintings and diagrams for children-appeal at D. All gardens consist of organic soil and fertilizer
at E and watered with water cans and hoses at F. Raised Bed with a Green House top is a vegetable
garden made of tomatoes, eggplant, and cucumbers at G, Raised Bed is also a vegetable garden made of
squash, lettuce, and broccoli at H, and In-Ground garden is a berry bush garden at I.




                                       Figure 3-8: The 1/3 -1/3 - 1/3 Garden


                                                       22
 The 1/3 -1/3 - 1/3 Garden uses three different garden structures which opens up the opportunities for a wide-range variety of plants and a
learning experience for kids to compare and contrast plant growth. The letter labels in the figure refer to the following: A, In-Ground garden;
B, Raised Bed garden; B.1, See through bed; C, Raised Bed garden with a Green House; C.1, Green House top; C.2, Web Cam; D, side
paintings; E, organic soil and fertilizer; F, watering systems; G, plants for Raised Bed with a Green House top; H, plants for raised bed; I,
plants for In-Ground.

The 1/3 -1/3 - 1/3 Garden is an easy appeal to children because of its ability to keep the children
interested and entertained by the different types of gardens they can explore. They can also compare
and contrast the different types of growth within each garden, which is explained through the diagrams.
By having this variety of gardens, the school will have a greater variety of all types of plants. The
construction of lumber wood could be discarded wood from lumber yards, which helps recycle existing
wood making the garden environmentally friendly.

3.3.6 Small Individual Plot Pot Garden
The Small Individual Plot Pot Garden, shown in Figure 3-2, is one large bordered garden which consists
of small individual plots of plants in-ground and in recycled pots of all sizes. The Small Individual Plot Pot
Garden is a 12 X 15 foot sized garden with a three foot high border of tree logs at A resembling Lincoln
logs. Each width side there is a three foot opening located right across from each other at B leading a
main gravel pathway at B.1 in and out of the garden. On the pathway there is the garden to your left
and right, both sides are a mixture of plots and pots of individual plants. Along the main pathway are
smaller pathways at C leading to sections of each garden. In-ground plants are clustered in small plots
that are each divided in sections by a wire or twin to distinguish each individual plant plot at D. In these
plots are plants such as cucumbers, carrots, eggplant, and strawberries. The collection of discarded and
donated pots has their own individual plant in each pot with decorated designs painted around the sides
at E. With the variety size of pots there are the herb and flower plants in the small pots at F.1, tomatoes,
peppers, and strawberries in the medium sized pots at F.2, and potatoes and apple trees in the large
pots at F.3. All plants are grown in organic soil and fertilizer at G. The entire garden is watered by water
cans and spray bottles for the smaller pots at H. There is no organization to the plots and pots location,
although it is scattered in a reasonable sense. Around the garden are posted diagrams to inform kids
about the plant life in the garden at I. As an activity for the children, there is a section of small pots with
soil and seeds at J for kids to take home and grow their own plants. In the end they can either keep the
plant or transplant them back into the school garden.




                                                                     23
                                               Figure 3-9: Small Individual Plot Pot Garden

Small Individual Plot Pot Garden allows children to engage in a personal experience with plant life and growth, by having the set up of
individual plantings within one large garden. The letter labels in the figure refer to the following: A, Small Individual Plot Pot Garden with log
borders; B, entrance and exit; B.1, pathway; C, smaller pathways to the garden; D, In-Ground plots; E, painted designed pots; F.1, small pot
plants; F.2, medium sized pot plants; F.3, large pot plants; G, organic soil and fertilizer; H, watering system; I, diagrams; J, kids’ take-home
pot activity.

The Small Individual Plot Pot Garden is a fun playground for the kids. With a classroom size of kids, they
can scatter throughout the garden and find their own interest in each plot or pot. The kids have an
opportunity to focus on their own plant or plants in the garden and have them assigned to take care of
that plant during the school year. With this design and system, it will make the job easy for kids to
maintain their plants and become successful at growing their plant. Additionally, if kids decide to take
home a plant they are studying the life of a plant, learning the responsibilities, and taking with them the
benefits of fresh organic fruits, vegetables, or herbs. By using recycled pots we are reducing waste
collection and creating a greener garden.




                                                                       24
4 Decision Phase
4.1 Introduction
Sprouting Education came to a consensus on the final solution by means of the weighted Delphi
Method. Criteria, from Section II, were assigned a weighted grade and compared to each alternative
solution.


4.2 Criteria Definition
The following criteria, from Section II, were used to assist the judgment of the alternative solutions.

Learning Potential: The ability to convey educational concepts from the garden to children.

Participant Safety: Children will be protected from any hazardous structure from the garden.

Reproducibility: The design of the garden can be easily reproduced and transferable by others.

Child Appeal: The attractiveness of the garden to children.

Cost: Total cost of all material and labor worth.

Sufficient Produce: The potential to produce enough produce for selling purposes.

Easy Maintenance: Simplicity of maintaining the garden during the summer.

Plant Safety: Plants will be protected from any harm or destruction.

Expandability: The design of the garden is accessible for any additional expansion.


4.3 Decision Process
The Decision process we used incorporated the Delphi method. The Delphi Method as seen in




Table 1: Weighted Criteria assigns different weights to different Criterion. Each Criterion is defined and
weighted by the group by voting on different numbers and taking the average. The projects are then
weighted and scored the same way. Once both the criteria and projects are defined, they are multiplied
together and then summed up. The clients then review the criteria and project weights and make their
adjustments. Once adjusted the best aspects from the top three projects and combine them to come up
with a solution.




                                                    25
                  Table 1: Weighted Criteria




     Criteria                                  Weight
Learning Potential                              10

Participant Safety                              10

 Reproducibility                                 9

  Child Appeal                                   8

      Cost                                       8

Sufficient Produce                               7

Easy Maintenance                                 6

   Plant Safety                                  2

  Expandability                                  1




                             26
Table 2: Delphi Method




         27
4.4 Final Decision Justification
Sprouting Education decided to use a combination of garden designs. The 1/3-1/3-1/3 Garden offers a
variety of growing styles which allow students to compare different gardening environments. All three
types of garden are designed to provide safe, expandable and unique learning environment. This is a
relatively low cost garden because it incorporates material that can be found or donated (for ex.
wooden pallets and kiddy pools), it only uses one greenhouse top and it has an inexpensive in ground
space for more resilient plants to grow. The Small Individual Pot Plot Garden offers students a space to
call their own, allowing them to have more responsibility and reward in the garden. This design also
provides an easy solution to summer maintenance of the garden as students may take their pots home
to tend over the summer.




                                                   28
5 Specification of Solution
5.1 Introduction
The specification section was written to convey the detailed portions of the design, construction and
maintenance of the team project. The overall costs of materials, labor and maintenance are included as
well as a prototype performance analysis to comprehend its effect on teaching schoolchildren about
agriculture, gardening and botany.


5.2 Solution Description
Sprouting Education designed and constructed a full-scale garden at the Trillium Charter School in
Arcata, CA for the educational purpose of teaching children about botany and the origin of foods. The
team was assigned an area of approximately 30’ by 40’ to dedicate to a garden. The decision to make a
variety of gardens was implemented, thus ensuring an abundance of flora. One garden bed with a
volume of 4’ by 12’ by 2’ was built parallel to the fence line along with two kiddie pools. The system was
built to include a rainwater catchment system which will water the garden by the pressure of gravity.




                                Figure 5-1: CAD Image of Garden Representation




                                                     29
5.3 Cost Analysis
5.3.1 Costs
The design cost total without donations will be $697.34. “Desserts on Us”, a local cookie
manufacturing company, donated the wooden shipping pallets required while Pierson’s
Hardware of Eureka donated multiple construction materials making the group total amount to
$270.63.

5.3.2 Maintenance Costs
The maintenance costs for the school garden will include labor during the summer while the
school is not in session, replacement costs for the PVC pipes every 3-5 years and the
greenhouse plastic sheeting annually. There are no labor costs if the school is able to find
capable parents and volunteers to take care of the plants during the summer.

Table of Costs

5.3.3 Labor
Cumulatively, Sprouting Education spent around 341 hours designing and constructing the school
garden. The amount of time spent in each category is shown in figure below.




                                                                                            1




                                    Figure 5-2: Created by Lukas Jones



                                                   30
5.4 Design
5.4.1 Garden Designs
The Sprouting Education school garden is a collection of three different types of garden designs, a raised
bed with a greenhouse top, two kiddie pool gardens and a water catchment system.

The raised bed is 4’x11’x2’ garden made of wood pallets, and painted to repel water. The original 4’x4’
sized pallets are cut in half to create two 2’x4’ pallets which construct the frame of the raised bed. Inside
the bed is lined with a geotextile fabric stapled against the wood pallets to contain the soil in the bed.
The entire raised bed frame is stabilized with support brackets at each end of the bed, while rebar
stakes are pounded into the ground at the mid-point of the pallets. There are four PVC pipes looped
above the bed and attached to the rebar to create a greenhouse frame. An additional PVC pipe is laid
across the top of the hoops to secure the pipes in place and hold the plastic sheeting taught to the side
panels.

The kiddie pool gardens are very simple garden designs. The two plastic Kiddie-Pools are both circular
shaped with a diameter of 4’ and 6” deep. The bottom edges of the pools have been drilled for adequate
water drainage.

5.4.2 Educational Purpose
Spouting Education’s school garden creates an interactive gardening experience for students from grade
levels 4–8. Students will be able to work in the garden, learn gardening techniques and learn about plant
growth. Given the variety of garden designs kids will be able to compare and contrast plant growth
between both styles of garden beds. Diagrams and illustrations are scattered around the garden to
teach student about the science behind the plant growth. Students can visualize the differences
between a malicious weed and an edible plant in the garden by referring to diagrams in the garden.
Included in the garden are measuring sticks and thermometers to teach kids how to measure the length
of plants, temperature of the garden and practice the science curriculum by taking data of plant growth.


5.5 Construction
5.5.1 Constructing the Hoop House Pallet Garden
To build the Hoop House Pallet Garden Bed, the following materials will be needed:

       4 Shipping pallets in uniform shape and design, and around 4’X4’ dimensions
        (May be acquired without charge from businesses that ship or receive large inventories)
       12 Lengths of 3’ rebar
       7 PVC pipes - 12’ lenght & 1/2” diameter

                                                     31
         12 U-clamps to fit over the PVC pipe
         Geotextile fabric, enough to line the inside of the garden bed, about 100 sq. ft.
         12’ X 12’ sheet of plastic sheeting (3 mil)
         One gallon of non-toxic weatherproof stain
          Paintbrushes
         Sponges
         Assorted screws, varying in ¼” to 2” in length
         12 pieces of salvaged 2’ X 4’ wood (>18” length)
         Staple gun with long staples (9/16”)
         Large sledge hammer
         Power drill
         Skill saw
         Sand paper
         Shovels
         Tape measure
         Enough soil to fill the 11’ X 4’ X 2’ garden bed (1-1/2 cu yards)
         2 Pinch clamps to fit over the PVC Pipe
         8 Bungee chords

Step 1)

Check pallets to ensure they are not treated with chemicals. The following website gives a good guide on
which pallets contain chemicals: http://www.palnetusa.com/a/global-domestic-pallet-standards/intl-
pallet-standards/what-every-buyer-needs-to-know.tpl

Step 2)

Measure and cut pallets in half, perpendicular to their slats as shown in Figure 5-3. This step should
result in eight similar looking halves. Don’t worry about minor unevenness; this will be smoothed out at
a later time. Now, sand all large splinters off of the pallets using coarse grade sandpaper.




                                                      32
                                    Figure 5-3: Measuring and cutting pallets




Step 3)

Using weather resistant wood stain, paint all the surfaces of the pallets to prevent rotting. The “hard-to-
get” spaces between the faces of the slats can easily be painted with sponges. Painting and sanding are
great activities for students to help with.




                                                      33
                                         Figure 5-4: Painting cut pallets

Step 4)

Take pallets to desired location and arrange them in a rectangle. This is the perimeter of the garden.
Connect and secure the pallets to each other by screwing salvaged 2x4” pieces of wood at the joints. To
join side panels and even out the tops of the pallets, place a piece of wood underneath the top trim and
secure to both pallets (this should also hide the 2x4 nicely). To join corners, cut 2x4’s to the same height
as the pallets. Place the wood vertically on the inside or outside of the corner, and screw it into both
corner pallets as shown in Figure 5-5.




                                        Figure 5-5: Corner and side joints

                                                       34
Step 5)

Paint the new wood additions as well as any other touchups on the frame. While the paint dries,
reinforce the frame with rebar. The rebar will keep the frame from bulging under the pressure of the soil
when it is filled. Pound a total of 4 rebar stakes into the ground along the outside of each length of the
frame. Rebar should be placed at every corner joint of the two long sides as shown in Figure 5-6. Rebar
can easily be pounded into the ground using a 2’ long capped metal pipe and a large hammer as shown
in Figure 5-6. Hold the rebar in place and slide the metal pipe over it. Pound the metal pipe until the
bottom of it touches the ground (this method insures that all rebar is pounded 1’ into the ground).
Remove the metal pipe and repeat for all remaining rebar.




                                         Figure 5-6: Pounding in rebar

Also place two rebar stakes into each of the end pallets. To do this, locate the mid-point in each pallet to
set the rebar where it will be hidden from site. Drill holes through the pallet supports, and pound the
rebar through the holes until the top of the rebar is flush with the top of the pallet.

Step 6)

Bend lengths of PVC pipe over the two rebar stakes across from each other. PVC pipes easily bend with
the aid of an assistant, one person holding each end of the pipe, walk towards each other until the pipe
is bent enough to fit over the rebar. Slide the PVC over the rebar until it touches the ground. Repeat this
step until all remaining sets of side rebar are holding a PVC Pipe.

Now secure each pipe to the pallet frame by placing a U-clamp over the pipe, about 2” below the top
edge of the pallet. Screw the clamps down and repeat this step until all eight ends of PVC are secured.

The end result of step 6 should look like Figure 5-7.


                                                      35
                                         Figure 5-7 Completed Frame

Step 7)

Test the Geotextile or landscaping fabric to see if it is permeable to water in only one direction; if so,
place the side which lets water run through facing up. Line the inside of the garden bed with the fabric,
again making sure that water will be able to completely drain out of the garden. Fabric can easily be
stapled to the top of the frame. While securing the fabric, remember to leave enough slack in the fabric
to reach to bottom corners and to keep a flat surface along the edges so that shovels and limbs don’t get
caught in the wrinkles as shown in Figure 5-8.




                                         Figure 5-8 Geotextile lining


                                                     36
Once the frame is lined with fabric, fill it with soil. A low-quality dirt can be used to layer the bottom, but
for the top, choose a fertile soil suitable for the plants.

Step 8)

To finish the green house frame, place a piece of PVC pipe underneath the tops of the hoops. This will
become the supporting pipe. While two people hold the pipe in place, a third person can screw a series
of U-clamps over each hoop and into the supporting pipe. There should be about 6” of pipe sticking out
on both ends of the garden.

Cut a 12x12 piece of 3 mil. plastic. At two opposing ends, place the last two PVC pipes flush with the
edge of the plastic. Using a staple-gun, staple the plastic to the pipe. Roll the plastic over the pipe once
or twice and staple it down again. Staples should be 2-3” apart, so that the plastic is well secured to the
pipes.

Step 9)

Now lay the plastic over the hoop frame evenly and secure the plastic to the supporting PVC pipe with a
pinch clamp on each end, as shown in Figure 5-9.




                                            Figure 5-9 Securing Plastic


                                                       37
Step 10)

To secure the bottom of the plastic, drill four evenly spaced holes into each pipe. Hook one end of each
bungee cord into each of the holes. Tug on each bungee cord to decide where it should connect to the
frame to keep the plastic taught. Screw in screws at the appropriate place, but let the screw heads stick
out about ¼”. Hook the loose end of the bungee cord to the screw as shown in Figure 5-10.




                                  Figure 5-10: Bungee cord holding down plastic

5.5.2 Constructing the Kiddie Pool Garden
To construct the Kiddie Pool Garden, the following items will be needed:

       Any size rigid plastic pool
       A drill & drill bit
       Soil

To construct the Kiddie Pool Garden, any size rigid plastic pool can be used. Use a drill to make about
twenty drainage holes on the bottom of the pools. Fill the pools up with soil, and they are ready to
plant.




                                                       38
                                        Figure 5-11: Kiddie Pool Gardens

5.5.3 Constructing the Water Catchment System
To construct a Water Catchment System the following materials will be needed:

      50 Gal. Barrel with lid
      2 sq. ft. of window screen
      Spigot
      Rubber washer that fits the spigot
      Male fitting for the spigot
      50 ft. Hose
      4 ft. Metal strap
      Pallet to build a structure
      3 sq. ft. Plywood board
      Weatherproof wood stain
      Paintbrushes
      Assorted Screws
      Drill with drill bit the diameter of spigot (1-1/4”)
      Saw




                                                      39
                                     Figure 5-12: Rainwater Catchment System

Step 1)

To construct the Water Catchment System, find a gutter outlet close to the garden. Dismantle the
vertical gutter outlet. Build a base structure for the barrel by cutting a pallet in half. Paint the pallet
halves and plywood with weatherproof stain.

Step 2)

While the paint dries, drill a hole into the barrel just above the base. Insert the spigot into the hole and
attach the washer to the back of the spigot by reaching inside the barrel. When the washer is in place,
screw the male fitting into the back of the spigot, compressing the washer. Once the spigot is in place,
test for leaks by filling the barrel half way with water. If the spigot leaks, try making the fitting tighter or
using silicone.

Step 3)

Cut out the center of the lid so that just the threads remain. If barrel has a two piece lid, simply remove
the center section. Place the piece of window screen on top of the barrel, and screw it down with the
lid. This creates a filter to keep large debris such as leaves out of the water.

Step 4)

When the paint has dried, assemble the base. Place pallet halves so that they are taller than wide, so
that the water tank sits at a higher elevation that the garden bed. Screw the plywood to the tops of the
pallets, creating a table-like structure as seen in Figure 5-12. Secure this base to the side of the building,

                                                       40
under the gutter, by screwing one of the pallets to the wall. Place the barrel on top of the stand and
secure it to the wall using the metal strap as shown in Figure 5-13. Attach the hose to the spigot to
completed the water catchment system construction process.




                                    Figure 5-13 Metal Strap Securing Barrel


5.6 Maintenance
The system was designed to require as little maintenance as possible, although normal garden
maintenance will need to be upheld to guarantee the success of the garden.

Task                      Time (min/year)

Water Garden              2.0

Weeding Garden            1.0

pH and Nutrient Top-Off 0.5

Soil Tilling              0.5

Total Time                4.0




                                                      41
Item                                           Cost (min/year)


pH and Nutrient Top-Off                        $$


Yearly Green House Plastic Replacement         $$


Others...                                      $$


Total Cost                                     $$.$$




5.7 Instructions for Implementation and Use
5.7.1 Implementation
To implement Trillium’s Children’s Garden, a location must first be selected for each desired component
of the garden. For the kiddie pool gardens and raised bed with greenhouse top, an area should be
chosen that receives enough sun for the plants planned on being grown. Also an area should be selected
that is within 50 ft. of a gutter outlet so that the hose from the water catchment system can reach the
garden. The water catchment system should be placed in a shaded area with a gutter outlet. Once a
location is chosen, the building instructions can be followed to build the garden.

5.7.2 Use
To use the raised bed with greenhouse top, bungee cords are unhooked from screws on the pallet
frame. One or both sides of the plastic can subsequently be rolled up and placed in-between the handles
of the pinch clamps, allowing access to the sides of the garden. To close the greenhouse top, the plastic
is rolled back down and secured to the pallet frame by hooking the bungee cords from the plastic to the
screw heads on the frame.

The kiddie pools are used as any planter box. If desired, the kiddie pools can be moved short distances
by rotating the pool onto a tarp and then pulling on the tarp to move the pool to its new location.

To use the water catchment system, wait for the drum to accumulate water. Turn the spigot on and wait
for water to come out of the end of the hose. Water the garden, and turn the spigot off when finished.
Periodically, clean off the screen on top of the barrel as it will accumulate debris. The pH of the water
can be adjusted, and nutrients can be added to the water by removing the lid, placing additives in the
water, and closing the lid.


                                                    42
5.8 Results
Trillium Children’s garden succeeded in providing easily implemented versions of elaborate garden
features. Although some schools might still find the task of building the design daunting, the time is
justifiable for the water catchment and greenhouse features. For schools who don’t feel the need for an
elaborate gardening space, the kiddie pool gardens offer a quick solution to simple raised beds. Trillium
Children’s Garden offers a variety of gardening solutions for schools to choose from. Each feature of the
design offers different learning opportunities and experiences for young students.




                                                   43
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                                                   c

				
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