Helping schools
Teacher with rhubarb
Children in a garden
Children planning a garden
Children in a garden

Helping Schools To Garden

Our work with schools focuses on the use of horticulture in the curriculum and we want to get the whole school community gardening.

We have been involved with all sorts of different projects since the Trust was founded.  Each initiative has built on the last and included School Grounds competitions, training days for teachers, practical advice and for the last eight years our very successful Wheelbarrow Workshops.  Over this time we have visited 174 primary schools in Hertfordshire and delivered 510 workshops.  If you like numbers, that is approximately 15,000 children who have been introduced to some plant science and had the chance to grow and nurture a plant of their own which is edible or produces something that is. If you want to see how they worked, click here Wheelbarrow Workshops explained

A group of volunteers have made this possible and they have loved the opportunity to inspire and engage the children who love learning by doing.  After each visit from a Mrs Wheelbarrow we have had evaluation sheets returned which give us great encouragement but for one niggle which is always "please stay longer". 

School gardening has changed hugely and is here to stay with the new curriculum as it can deliver so many messages from healthy eating to Key Stage 2 science with its focus on observation.  The RHS now have really great resources on their website covering all stages of learning and lessons plans to accompany them and a school gardening benchmark scheme.  We want to look at different ways of supporting you.

How Hertfordshire Gardens Trust can help you

We are launching the Mrs Wheelbarrow Grant.  The intention is to combine the practical help we delivered through Wheelbarrow Workshops with some financial benefit  which was available though our awards scheme. See 2013 School Awards.

How the HGT Mrs Wheelbarrow Grant works

This will grant a maximum of £1,000 to put towards a school garden.  Importantly, the grant includes the help and guidance of a Mrs Wheelbarrow who will visit up to four times (each session lasting two hours) to help put your ideas into practice and provide guidance when you need it most in the academic year. This could be a site visit to help plan, position and cost your garden with some simple design suggestions.  Or, we could deliver practical workshops for a class or gardening club during the growing season.  You could have a combination of both. The choice is yours so we can support your school gardening over a year in the way that helps you the most.

How to apply

This is a straightforward process, with one A4 sheet to explain what you are planning, how the school will benefit and how you will put the ideas into practice. The application will be assessed by a panel of judges and we will get back to you by the end of the summer holidays to inform you of the results. For the successful, the grant will be available from September 2015 when a Mrs Wheelbarrow will be allocated to you to follow up and provide advice.

For an application form please email The deadline for applications is 22nd July 2015.

Garden informtion sheets

Our Garden Information Sheets are full of practical advice on anything from planting and aftercare to tools, hedging and screening, poisonous plants, gravel gardening, compost making, paths and paving, saving seeds, plants for a sunny site to plants for shade, vegetables, polytunnels and cold frames, herbs, heritage running a school gardening club and many more. They are all free.

If you are a school and interested in receiving our Garden Information Sheets or would like more information, please get in touch with our schools coordinator:

Bella Stuart-Smith at