Presidents Park Greenhouse
The Presidents Park Greenhouse (PPG) was formerly owned by the College of Science and was used to grow plants for Biology and Ecology classes. In 2014, the College of Science occupants moved to the top of Exploratory Hall, leaving the greenhouse vacant. The Office of Sustainability took ownership of the greenhouse and created a plan for year-round food production. The plan involved the installation of a hydroponic food production system and was made possible through generous grants from both the Auxiliary Enterprise Management Council and Patriot Green Fund.
The staff at the PPG now produce approximately 2,000 lbs. of fresh produce annually which raises $20,000 annually that is used to pay for supplies, staff and utilities. Harvests include fresh produce such as basil, cilantro, lettuce, and other baby greens.
All of the produce grown in the PPG is sold to Mason Dining, managed by Sodexo. Each harvest is incorporated into the recipes and salad bars at Ike’s, Southside, the Globe, and catering. In exchange for the produce, Mason Dining contributes toward the PPG’s operational costs.
During its first year of operation, the PPG logged over 200 volunteer hours, ranging from students, to staff, to interested community members. The PPG’s success has been built upon the generous help and support of its volunteers. All volunteers are welcome during our weekly walk-in schedule.
Presidents Park Greenhouse Fall Weekly Walk-in Volunteer Schedule:
Mon 3-6 (Learn to design and build hydroponic systems by helping with installation)
Tue 10-2 (Help with harvests, learn to prune herbs like basil and harvest microgreens)
Thurs 5:30-7:30 (Sow seeds in the microgreen rack)
Fri 10-2 (Sow seeds in cubes, transplant seedlings, and pest management)
If you are a student in the Environmental and Sustainability Studies program, you will need 3 credits of an internship to graduate. You can do this internship at the greenhouse and gardens hosted by the Office of Sustainability. You can find all the application materials in this Google Drive folder.
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Donielle Nolan (Doni for short)
Greenhouse and Gardens Specialist