Welcome to the
 Department of Sustainability




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Hoe garden: The Sustainability Office coordinates the Garden and Greenhouse Program.  Currently, there are over 80 school gardens/farms across DPS.  We oversee and provide support to these gardens and coordinate the Denver School Garden Coalition, a collaboration that serves the needs and circumstances within each school garden through coordinated and complimentary garden programming. See below for a link to the Denver School Garden Coalition Manual.

Click here for a Map of Gardens Across DPS

Click here for the DPS Grades 3 to 5 Garden Curriculum

Click here for Draft DPS Chicken Protocol


Garden Services the Sustainability Office provides:

  • Site-walk and garden location analysis: We’ll contact the appropriate offices within DPS to approve your garden site.
  • Basic school garden resources: planting calendars, garden types/themes, curriculum.
  • Create connections between your school and local organizations that can provide further programming and maintenance support.

Contact Us! 


Garden Programs through DPS Sustainability Office

The Garden of Youth program enables high school students with disabilities to experience themselves as active, vital participants in their community by bringing healthy, fresh food to local residents and businesses, while simultaneously learning about sound nutrition and healthy lifestyles.  The Garden of Youth is designed to be a hands-on and relevant work-training program that incorporates job readiness and entrepreneurial skill development to prepare students to obtain and maintain future employment.  Students enrolled in the project are engaged in planning, planting, cultivating and harvesting fresh vegetables and herbs at gardens on their campus.  Participants in the Garden of Youth also promote and sell harvested produce at local farmers markets. Currently, three schools are participating in the Garden of Youth Program: Thomas Jefferson High School, North High School, and Manual High School.


Starting a School Garden

If your school is interested in growing a school garden follow these steps to success…

1. Contact the Sustainability Office to schedule a site walk, discuss possible community partnerships, and come up with ageneral garden plan moving forward.

1. Form a garden committee: include students, faculty, parents, and community members.

2. Choose location with Sustainability Office’s support: south-facing, close to water . Test the soil.

3. Choose a garden design or theme: keep school programs/curriculum in mind.

4. Consider which plants you’d like to grow.  Order seed catalogs. Contact DUG or local nursery about free seeds or transplants.

5. Develop fundraising or research grant opportunities.

6. Gather supplies: tools, storage, compost system etc.

7. Choose and install irrigation system.

8. Come up with a plan for groundbreaking day; enlist support from students, parents, community members and local businesses and organizations.

9. Prep the site; install basic garden elements such as fencing, pathways, garden beds, water spigot and amend soil.


Denver School Garden Coalition

The DPS Sustainability Office works in collaboration with several community organizations to facilitate the initiation and sustainability of gardens, greenhouses and urban farms across the district. This collaborative has developed a set of guidelines to aid schools and communites in the initiation and growth of gardens and greenhouses:



Our Garden Partners

The Sustainability Office Garden and Greenhouse program is proud to partner with these local organizations:

  • Denver Urban Gardens                                                               DUG:
  • Slow Food Denver                                                                  Slow Food:
  • UC Denver, Learning Landscapes                                            LL:
  • Urbiculture Farms                                                                  Urbiculture:
  • Revision International                                                              Revision:
  • The GrowHaus                                                                    GrowHaus:
  • Waste Farmers/ Maxfield’s                                                Maxfield's:               
  • The Kitchen Community                                                        TKC:           


If you are interested in initiating a school or community garden or greenhouse at a DPS school site, please start by contacting the DPS Sustainability Office at 720-423-4171.