Burr and Burton has an exciting new partnership with Hildene, offering hands-on, real life educational experiences for BBA students. Hildene has recently converted its River Road property to working farmland, inviting BBA to create a garden space and have access to its brand new, state-of-the-art greenhouse. This new collaboration is the backbone of BBA’s Farm-to-School initiative and adds a cutting edge to our curriculum. The greenhouse and garden sit on over 400 acres of meadow, woods and wetland. Beyond the farm and greenhouse, this new partnership also offers students access to apple orchards, beehives, a bobolink preserve, rotational grazing of livestock, meadow ecology, wetland ecology, forest management and much more.
The Dene Farm Program is in the midst of our second full growing season. This year our garden has expanded as we strive to improve the sustainability of our food system at Burr and Burton Academy. Our academic opportunities are also expanding at BBA. This year we have added Ethnobotany (the human uses of plants) to our course offerings including Sustainable Agriculture, Ecology, Naturalist Studies and Food Systems.
This summer we have a solid crew of five committed student and graduate employees. Most of our crew came to us through the Dene Farm Program courses. BBA’s farm crew is helping to keep our school and community connected to the land, promoting healthy relationships with food and fostering a mindset of environmental responsibility.
We continue to sell our popular microgreens at the Manchester farmer’s market every Thursday from 3-6. We are growing a wide variety of vegetables in our educational garden. In our new production garden we are focusing 4 main crops that have worked well with our food system (beets, tomatoes, carrots and potatoes). All of our produce goes directly to the BBA cafeteria or to the Manchester community.