Step Four: Analyze the Site

As a class, head out to your secured space to analyze the environmental conditions. If you are planning on planting directly into the ground, collect three soil samples to send to a nearby soil-testing lab or extension service. See the Garden Toolshed for a lab locator and instructions on how to collect the samples. You may conduct your own analysis instead by purchasing a soil-testing kit from a local hardware store.

Green Ambassador Challenge Images

A historic example of a garden plan. Plan drawing by Mr. A. J. Baker of Hermitage Garden, Tennessee. Glass lantern slide, c. 1934. Archives of American Gardens. 

Measure and record the dimensions of the space. Continue the analysis by identifying existing plants, insects, sunlight direction, water sources, and other important conditions of the area to be used for the model. Using this data, construct a scaled map including all key features of the area on grid paper or with a computer model.  

Dig in Deeper: Set up a rain gauge in your future green space to monitor rainfall. How could the project be impacted by climate change?