Ready, Set, Grow! New Greenhouse Now Open
Ready, Set, Grow! New Greenhouse Now Open

After months of planning, permits and construction, the PDS Greenhouse is finally ready for occupancy! The new greenhouse, which is twice the size of its predecessor, offers more room for plants and student exploration with a balance of growing spaces and new classroom work areas. Other new features will include grow towers allowing for vertical growth to conserve space and maximize the number and variety of plants. Garden program coordinator Pam Flory, who has been itching to bring her seedlings into the greenhouse, got the official green light this weekend. "The greenhouse will serve as the staging space for spring planting and the winter home for the garden program in addition to hosting a permanent collection of plants available for study," she explained.

During PDS Garden Cleanup Day on April 6, a team of volunteers worked together to tackle several must-have items needed to get the space ready for use this week. For example, staff member and build-anything expert Ryan Donovan worked with ceramics teacher and design innovator Eric Rempe to create custom furniture for the space, with faculty members Liz Cutler and Tom Pettengill pitching in as well. Additionally, family volunteers re-potted seedlings that will now be housed in the greenhouse. It makes sense that community members across the school were eager to help finish out the space this weekend; the new greenhouse will benefit not only sustainability and garden programming, but also any science, humanities, visual arts or other classes from PreK to 12th Grade wishing to use the space as a learning lab to enrich their curricula.

Many thanks to Schmitt Anderson Architects, the construction crew, PDS facilities, buildings and grounds staff and everyone at PDS who helped get the greenhouse ready for action. Soon to come: ceiling fan installations and an integration of the adjacent courtyard space!

Photos: Above, custom stools and metal tables crafted by Ryan Donovan and Eric Rempe; below, precious seedlings have a new home on the mobile tables; a view of the expansive new greenhouse space on April 5, prior to this weekend's furniture installation and volunteer efforts.