The Garden Blogger Challenge


Some of you may have noticed that your favorite blogs are participating in the Blogger Challenge.  The idea is that teachers post requests for funding for a particular project, and bloggers choose projects to support.  They encourage readers (that’s you–and me) to donate, and they’ll keep track of the winners through Oct. 31.  Awards go to the blogs that get the most donors involved, raise the most money, or help the most students.  But it’s not about the awards–it’s about what happens in the classroom.

So here’s our idea:  Let’s get all the garden bloggers together to do one big challenge. By putting out one mega-challenge, we can really send the message that garden bloggers are an active community, and that gardening matters.  After all, garden bloggers are still an overlooked group–there is rarely a "garden blog" category in blog directories or award programs, and the mainstream garden media is still figuring out what a blog might be.  So let’s band together and make our voices heard.  Make a donation if you can, and please do put a link on your own blog to help spread the word.

We’ve chosen an ambitious $10,000 worth of projects to fund.  Most projects are proposed by young, ambitious teachers, many of them part of the Teach for America programs.  The schools are almost all high-poverty schools.  Some don’t have any safe outdoor space for a garden, so the teachers request indoor grow equipment.  There are worm composting projects, butterfly projects, and many projects for kids with special needs. 

Donating is easy–just follow this link to the GardenRant Global Garden Blogger Challenge.  Feel free to link directly to that page on your own blog.  We’ll keep a thermometer in the sidebar throughout the month of October to track the donations raised in response to this challenge–regardless of whether they came from GardenRant readers or readers of any other garden blog that wants to join us. You’ll even find a link there to email the challenge to your friends.

Gardens.  Schools.  What’s not to like?  I’m getting off my butt (oh, wait, I can do this without getting off my butt!) and making a donation now.


  1. This is a great idea! I’m in. I’ll put a link/post up about it over at In the Garden Online today. is a wonderful organization. In my previous life (pre-children) I worked in a very cash-strapped school district. To say the least, donations were the lifeblood of many ambitious teachers curriculums. Unfortunately, the school funding issue has gotten worse, and not better, in the four years since I stopped working in public education.

  2. Recently, while (heavily) fertilizing my garden with phosphorus in preparation for Bloom Day, I tripped on the soaker hose and hit my head on the birdbath.

    So I need a little extra help figuring out how this works.

    Am I limited to posting a simple text link on my blog to the website for the DonorsChoose GR Garden Blogger Challenge? Because I would like to put a thermometer in my sidebar too. Can I get an HTML tag for your thermometer that links to the challenge?

    [Also, you call it a “global” challenge, but all the challenges are in the US–which is fine, but what’s so Global–and do we really need that extra G? The extra syllables make my wounded, bloodied head throb with pain.

    Also, because I blog not infrequently about getting high and trespassing into my neighbor’s yard, I want to retain my anonymity such as it is. The DonorsChoose people seem to want my actual name in order to log in check the place out. Am I wrong about that?

  3. I chose the worm program in Chicago because I’d seen how much fun it is for that age group – like the kids in Ed Bruske’s gardening and composting program here in DC. ANd sure enough, this teacher GETS IT. She’s amazing.

  4. I can’t get the damn thermometer thingy to work on this blog, much less anybody else’s. So at the moment the option is to put a link in your blog to the page.

    As for being anon–when I checked out, there was an option to do that right at the end. I think they did still want address etc, but that may be more for credit card processing than anything.

  5. I made my donation for the Walk on the Wild Side. Fabulous idea! I’ll go set a link on my blog and my favorite garden board now and see if can rustle up another donor or two.

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