Home Grown
Enhance your home school program with our hands-on fun and educational classes.
All programs require preregistration. Click the links below register online, or contact Derrick Stowell, Director of Education, at dstowell@utk.edu, (865) 974-7151. 

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Pollinators in the Garden

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On this field trip, we will learn about all of our garden’s helpful pollinators like bees, birds, beetles, butterflies, moths, and one surprise pollinator. September is a particularly perfect month to explore one of our favorite pollinators – monarch butterflies. These orange beauties migrate through our region on the way down south to Mexico where they will spend the winter. After they’ve learned how to identify these creatures and their plant preferences, homeschoolers will embark on a scavenger hunt throughout the garden and even get to create their own Mason bee house. 

Pre-registration is required.​​​


Thursday, September 28th, 2017: 10 a.m - 12 p.m
Cost: $8/children
Instructors: David Pease & Milly Burnett, UT Gardens educators


Putting the Garden to Bed + Fall Seeds

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This field trip will cover all the basics of how to tuck your garden into bed when the summer is over. Not all plants have to say goodnight though, because together we will discover seeds to use in the cooler months! Students will collect seeds for their very own collection, and create a seed bomb full of various wildflowers to bring home and plant! Come join us for this fall adventure!

Pre-registration is required.​​​​

Thursday, October 19, 2017: 10 - 12 p.m.
Instructors: David Pease & Milly BurnettUT Gardens educators
Cost: $8/children


Autumn Leaves: Collection & Identification

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In this leafy lesson, we will learn about the structure and function of plant leaves, leaf morphology, nomenclature, identification, why they fall and change colors, and ways to collect leaves. We will learn how to save leaves, and incorporate our creative eyes as we create rubbings and prints using leaves collected around the gardens.​ 

Pre-registration is required.​​​​

Monday, November 13, 2017: 10 - 12 p.m.
Instructors: David Pease & Milly BurnettUT Gardens educators
Cost: $8/children​ 


Clones in the Garden!

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Ever wonder why so many plants look almost identical? Well, it’s because genetically they are identical! In a world where so many people and animals of the same species all look so different, how is it that we have identical plants? In this lesson will learn about basic plant physiology and the movement of materials in, through, and out of plants so that we can learn how to propagate, or "clone," identical plants. Students will transform into mad scientists working in the lab, or greenhouse, and leave with their own cloned plant.

Pre-registration is required.​​​​

Monday, December 11, 2017: 10 - 12 p.m.
Instructors: David Pease & Milly Burnett
UT Gardens educators
Cost: $8/children


What’s in a Name + Plant Identification 

“Is that poison ivy?” Ever been unsure what a plant is in the garden? In this lesson, we will learn the basics of plant classification and taxonomy. We’ll look at how plants are name and categorized. From trees, to shrubs, grasses, perennials, annuals, fungi and bacteria, we’ll explore the garden looking for all sorts organisms and what the most important identifying morphological characteristics are to tell one plant from another. This will include close looks at things like leaves, needles, fascicles, bark, flowers, seeds and fruits.​

Pre-registration is required.​​​​

January, TBA
Instructors: David Pease & Milly Burnett
UT Gardens educators
Cost: $8/children


Nutrients and Compost

Ever wonder where plants go when they need vitamins? And what happens when they die? In this class we will explore the cycles of nutrients in nature and the garden. We will learn how nature recycles itself through composting with the F.B.I. (fungus, bacteria, and invertebrates). We will learn different methods for composting, managing compost, what can go wrong when compost isn’t properly managed and go on a scavenger hunt for F.B.I. around the gardens!

Pre-registration is required.​​​​

February, TBA
Instructors: David Pease & Milly BurnettUT Gardens educators​
Cost: $8/children


Aquaponics, Nitrogen Cycle and pH

Can you grow plants in water? Yes, you can with the right ingredients! In this lesson, we will learn the basics of aquaponics – that is growing plants in in water and using fish to provide the nutrients and fertilizer needed for plants. This practice is growing in popularity as people in urban and suburban areas look for innovative ways to grow food that are sustainable and reduce environmental/carbon impacts. Come join us on this aquatic adventure!

Pre-registration is required.​​​​

March, TBA
Instructors: David Pease & Milly BurnettUT Gardens educators
Cost: $8/children​​​

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