Larry provides his on-site gardening consultations and mentoring services to K-12 Students, Adults-Seniors-Veterans. The overall focus is on how to set up and maintain soil-based or hydroponic-based gardens and how to integrate both for year-round gardening. The focus is on growing pesticide-free vegetables and herbs. The overall goal is to help people become more self-reliant by taking some control of what they eat by growing some of what they eat.
Larry meets with designated personnel (the client) to review their site location (indoor and/or outdoor). Personnel identify what they would like to accomplish and why. Available and needed resources (personnel, materials, supplies, funding), timing, and commitment are identified. Identify parameters for identifying what a successful project will look like.
Larry provides a follow-up detailed plan for setting up and maintaining the project throughout the timeline. The plan includes estimated costs, any areas for training, areas of responsibility, expectations, and a series of scheduled on-site follow-up sessions to ensure the project is proceeding as planned and agreed to. Upon approval of the plan with cost estimates, payment schedules, and timelines by the client, the project start date is implemented.
Each project is unique. However, the client can expect follow-up meetings-sessions to evaluate progress and address any barriers. Collaboration with the client, e.g., teachers, is on-going and any needed adjustments are made to ensure continued success. Pre-scheduled interactive feedback sessions help to keep the project on track, reconfirming areas of responsibility and expectations. At the end of the timeline, the project is evaluated for its successes (and failures) and what could be done differently the next year.
· Collaborate with the STEM and other teachers to link their classroom-book learning with interactive, hands-on hydroponic and/or soil-based-gardening methods to reinforce the teachers’ curriculum and effective gardening practices
· Collaborate with school administrators and faculty to establish a sustainable school lunch program with student-grown vegetables and herbs
· Collaborate with school administrators and faculty to establish a Gardens for Giving program, with the goal of donating the food to people in need
· Establish a succession planning process with upper-class students so the school lunch program (or other project related programs) could continue without interruption
· Collaborate with school administrators and the chef to establish a health and safety protocol for handling, harvesting, and delivering the vegetables and herbs to the kitchen staff
· Establish garden-teams who will learn about the cycle of life, how to start seeds, transplant seedlings, maintain, harvest, and cook their vegetables in the school’s kitchen
· Establish a student-run for-profit business to provide fresh, pesticide-free vegetables and herbs to the local restaurant(s) and grocery outlet(s)
· Conduct learn-by-doing on-site sessions for first-time gardeners and residents (and employees) to start and maintain their garden or community garden plot
· Collaborate with the City’s Housing Department to show seniors living in high-rise units how they could set up, implement, and maintain their own hydroponic and soil-based gardens for year-round gardening
· Conduct learn-by-doing sessions with farmers and hobby-farmers to demonstrate how they could integrate their soil-based gardens with hydroponics to extend their growing season and create a business selling salad greens and other vegetables and herbs during the winter months
· Assist special-needs veterans transition to high-rise units by providing them with a structured and challenging experience to grow, maintain, and harvest their own vegetables
· Collaborate with personnel and facilitators to conduct interactive sessions with people with dementia, along with their care givers, to learn and use hydroponics to grow salad greens in their home that involves active social engagement, manual dexterity, and decision making