All gardens have weedy patches or broken tools

We aim to foster a “growth mindset” towards sustaining school gardens that thrive

The School Garden Doctor’s leadership, organizational skills and expertise in the field of garden-based learning helped to create meaningful relationships and sustainable change in the way school gardens are utilized and approached within the district.

Asha Levert-Mcdowell, Napa County Office of Education Community Programs

Carrie Strohl, Founder & Board President leading a Zucchini Taste Test in the garden at Pueblo Vista in 2019.

The School Garden Doctor was founded in 2018 by Carrie Strohl, whose vision is to support gardens that thrive–not just survive. With a Ph.D. in education, Carrie promotes an evidence-based approach to direct service, curricular integration, and professional learning. She is an active member of the Napa community, often volunteering time and expertise to benefit other nonprofit or civic organizations.

The School Garden Doctor focuses on positive attributes of a garden and works to maximize the learning potential of a space. We embrace collaboration and collective decision making to eliminate barriers to sustaining well-loved gardens. Our approach is:

  • Community Minded
  • Asset Focused
  • Consensus Driven

Currently recruiting additional leaders!

Are you looking to contribute time or expertise to a growing nonprofit? Submit the interest form below or contact carrie@schoolgardendoctor.org

Current Board Leadership

Rebecca Abbott, Professional Learning Lead

I have spent my career working in public school education settings, as a 3rd grade teacher, an instructional coach, early literacy teacher, and teacher-educator. A highlight over these years was regularly taking students on field trips to explore the Bay Area and seeing their curiosity and excitement about the natural world. In my current role at The Lawrence Hall of Science, I provide support for educators across the country as they work to infuse high-quality science teaching and learning into their school settings. I am excited to bring this range of large-scale to small-scale perspective of education reform to The School Garden Doctor and to support the organization’s mission of providing engaging, local, relevant nature- and garden-based experiences and to promote student and teacher learning in these areas.

Nancy Lim, Retired Elementary School Teacher

From a young age, I played and worked in my family’s garden.  Fast forward many years and I would share my interest in gardening with students during my career as an elementary school teacher, reading specialist and parent education coach.  I taught at a K-8 school that valued monthly class field trips and class gardens.  Consistently, the outdoor experiences were big highlights for all students.  I loved bringing students out into the real world and watching them interact with nature – learning by doing, thinking and questioning.  At school, our class garden was a nearby natural environment that provided so many possibilities for discovery, problem solving and creativity.  Students loved harvesting and eating veggies and herbs during cooking lessons.  Now retired, I am eager to help educators provide hands-on learning and gardening experiences through supporting the mission of The School Garden Doctor.

Louann Talbert, Retired Middle School Teacher

I have been an avid gardener my whole life and come from a long line of gardeners and farmers.  My involvement with school gardens covers the past 30 years, eventually leading to the development of a Garden-to-Table elective at my last school before retiring in 2020. Getting outdoors is so important for people of all ages; it promotes good physical and mental health and helps us understand our place in the world. I am passionate about helping educators get children outside to learn and become good stewards of our planet.

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