Educational Garden & Farm
You’ll see lots of red and tartan around campus, but don’t let that fool you, we are more than proud of our green thumbs.
Our Educational Garden & Farm, funded in part by a grant from the Environmental Protection Agency, lets students literally get their hands dirty while learning about the basics of agriculture, food production and sustainability. It also plays an important role in the work of our Educational Studies majors who are preparing to become teachers, especially those who seek to serve rural school districts.
Berries, beans and bees
The garden packs a lot into half an acre: garden beds for more than 20 vegetables, a mini-orchard, a grape arbor, bees, a solar-powered rainwater irrigation system, an edible herb garden, a small rain garden, a flower garden, and a small prairie plot of grasses and wildflowers. Whew, that’s a lot of good stuff!
The market farm sits on a larger plot of 6.7 acres generously donated by a Monmouth resident. It features berry bushes, vegetable patches, peach and apple trees, and corn. The on-site hoop house, tractor and work shed are used by the all-student garden crew to grow and harvest the crop sold at local farmer’s market and area restaurants. The chicken coop provides the community with farm-fresh eggs.
Students work directly on the farm and in the garden to help produce a variety of crops and products including kale, spinach, lettuce, chard, tomatoes, bell peppers, soybeans, corn and squash. The chicken coop produces a couple dozen eggs per week and several bee hives produce delicious honey. Products are used by students in Monmouth’s dining services, cooked by students in their residence halls, and sold at local farmers markets.
Monmouth’s living classrooms offer unique opportunities for authentic, hands-on learning. Immersive field trips, gardening workshops, collaborative lesson design, student project support and community education events all work together to tell a story of learning from the land and of sustainable land use and good nutrition.