Life Lab

Life Lab cultivates children's love of learning, healthy food, and nature through garden-based education.

Saving Water in the Garden Sign Design

The newest sign in our Garden Sign collection is designed by National Geographic Scientific Illustrator Jose Miguel Mayo and demonstrates tips and tools for saving water.

View all our Garden Sign Designs.

Tips for Saving Water in the Garden

Plant native and drought-tolerant plants. Learn more at native plant organizations like California Native Plant Society.

For newly planted seeds and seedlings, waterless deep and more frequently to keep the soil surface constantly moist. For more established plants, water less frequently, but deeper to encourage deep roots.

Water during the morning or late afternoon hours. You could contact a Plumbing service in your area to install a sprinkler or a drip irrigation system that could help reduce loss of water due to evaporation.

Apply 3 or more inches of mulch (like straw) to hold moisture in the soil. Mulch also helps control weeds that compete with plants for water. Add compost to help soil retain water longer.

Learn to assess soil moisture with the squeeze test: Dig down a few inches and grab a handful of soil. If the soil easily sticks together in a ball your moisture level is probably fine. If the soil can’t form a ball it is most likely time to water.

Tools for Saving Water in the Garden

Use a hose faucet timer.The Garden Classroom's Rainwater Harvesting System

Install water-efficient irrigation devices.
We love Dripworks for all your drip irrigation needs. They offer a discount to school gardens and loads of advice. If you’re looking to treat water for industrial purposes, perhaps for irrigation but also in factories, cooling towers, hotels, and more, you may want to install industrial water softeners to remove certain ions from hard water.

Use a shut-off nozzle on your hose.

Install a Flow Meters water meter, or a similar product, so that you can keep a direct eye on how much water you are using in the garden and therefore prevent wasting it.

Use a rain gauge to measure how much rain water your garden has received. Water less after a rain.

Install a rain barrel or rain water catchment system. See GrowNYC and HarvestingRainWater.com for great resources on rainwater harvesting. If you are installing a rain barrel or rain water catchment system then ensure your gutters are all in good working condition. It might also be sensible to contact Clean Pro Gutter Cleaning Bergen County or somewhere similar to clean your gutters so that the rain water catchment system can work to the best of its capabilities.

Use a dipping bucket for kids to easily fill their watering cans. Collect bottles to make watering cans.

More water conservation tips from the UCSC Farm & Garden For the Gardener Publications.

And even more tips from Oprah!

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3 weeks ago

Life Lab

Become a Life Lab Certified Gardener! ๐ŸŒฑ๐ŸŒปBased on the success of our first four cohorts of Life Lab-Certified Garden Educators, we are excited to announce that registration is now open for individuals to register and be part of our fifth cohort starting January 23rd, 2023! Weโ€™ve put together a series of 4 on-line courses that will guide and support educators in becoming a Life Lab-Certified School Garden Educator. Upon successful completion of the 4 courses, participants will receive a certificate and the distinction of being a Life Lab-Certified Garden Educator. Each course will last 4 weeks long and include 4 synchronous meetings, at-home work, and a unique coaching model. The total commitment for the full series is 16 weeks. Check out our website for more information! Registration for the full certification series is now open. Please share with others who are looking for ideas and inspiration in the garden! There are 24 spots available and we sold out in our last 4 certification series. We hope you can join us!Life Lab offers a limited number of course fee reductions based on need and anticipated impact. To apply for financial assistance, follow the link below. Scholarship applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis between now and December 1st, 2022 or until all funds have been awarded.

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2 months ago

Life Lab

Thanks Shmuel! and all those that joined the Starlight workday.

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7 months ago

Life Lab

www.lifelab.org/jobs Full-time Bilingual Garden Educators at PVUSD School Gardens and Summer Program Staff at Garden Classroom on UCSC Farm

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7 months ago

Life Lab

Full-time Career and Summer Staff Positions in @pajarovalleyusd school gardens and the Life Lab Garden Classroom. On the @ucscagroecology farm @ucsc @pvusdschoolfood lifeLab.org/jobs

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7 months ago

Life Lab

We are so glad to be a part of this yearโ€™s Growing School Gardens Summit! 415 attendees from 45 states across the US, representing 6,000+ school gardens serving more than 2.5 million students. Here we go!!

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9 months ago

Life Lab

Rainbow Chips ๐Ÿ“—๐ŸŒฑ๐Ÿ“™๐ŸŠ๐Ÿ“•๐Ÿ…In this lesson students introduce themselves, create group agreements, listen to a story about a rainbow, and then go on a search for different colors in order to begin to form a personal connection with the #gardenclassroom .Also, we just wanted to show this really awesome squash gradience ๐Ÿ˜„#gardenbasededucation #NGSS #scienceinthegarden #schoolgarden #NGSGintheGarden

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9 months ago

Life Lab

Food Factories ๐Ÿ…๐Ÿฅ—๐Ÿ˜‹In this lesson, students find leaves with holes in them and then construct explanations for what might havecaused those holes. They listen to a story book and add further possible explanations for the holes. Thenthey explore the garden to prepare to engage in argument from evidence about which explanation for these holes seems the most plausible. Finally, they relate this concept to plants that humans eat.#NGSGintheGarden #NGSS #gardenbasededucation

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Life Lab provides truly inspiring training. Their breadth of experience, joy for teaching, and commitment to sharing knowledge highlight the best practices in food and garden education.
Erica CurryTraining and Professional Development ManagerFoodCorps
Thank you for such a wonderful field trip experience! Your leaders did such a great job at keeping our kids engaged.
Sheila BrickenKindergarten TeacherSan Lorenzo Valley Elementary
Terry had another awesome two weeks at Life Lab. I think he learns more there than in any other part of his year. School is great, but he’s passionate (and often dogmatic) about what he learns there.
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