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    Welcome to the Ballard High SchoolGreenhouse

    Two people planting a tree

    The greenhouse was built with donations from the BHS foundation and was spearheaded by Ballard teacher Toni Bukowski.

    The greenhouse is now named after Mrs. B to honor her dedication to sustainability and making connections to the greater community by teaching students about plants.

    Ms Carslson holding up a book PhenologyMs. Carlson took over the program over 10 years ago. Current projects include a climate garden to monitor weather and its effect on plants, pollination studies, growing plants for use in the food science class, and studying native plants.

    Check out the Project Budburst site.

    The greenhouse program serves over 130 students per year and continues to grow. 


    January 2021!

    Washington science teachers get creative during pandemic learning | Home Hydroponics

    The Seattle Times Education Lab: Updated Jan. 4, 2021 at 6:21 am 
    By Hannah Furfaro, Seattle Times staff reporter

    "India Carlson, who teaches botany and environmental horticulture at Ballard High School, gives plants to students during a curbside pickup event at the school Dec. 10. (Erika Schultz / The Seattle Times)" 

    Read the complete article on seattletimes.com

    Washington science teachers get creative during pandemic learning

    BHS Teacher India Carslon outside with student at plant table"Every two weeks or so, Carlson, a botany and environmental horticulture teacher at Ballard High School, dons a mask and gloves, carts out trays of plants to the back of the school and awaits her students.

    She hands out colorful coleus, catnip, geraniums and succulents. The teens arrive one by one, have quick chats with the teacher they mostly see over video lessons, and depart with new flora to care for at home. On a few occasions, she’s dropped off plants at her students’ homes.

    “My expectations of being able to cover a specific amount of content? That’s out the window,” said Carlson, who has run the school’s greenhouse for 13 years. “My whole thing is, I want students to be interested in and engaging with science on a personal level.”

    This is science class during the pandemic: teachers turning typically hands-on lessons on their head, and finding lively ways to engage students learning remotely."   

    Sharing excitement

    "The Ballard High greenhouse is home to pineapple plants and a kumquat tree. Carlson has an affinity for unusual plants — especially ones you’re unlikely to find in Seattle. “Mostly it’s cloned plants, though, that I started cloning before school started,” Carlson said. “I knew I wanted to give plants to students.”

    "If her class was in person, you’d find Carlson and her students in the greenhouse or the school garden, getting dirt under their nails as they plant food or work on experiments. These days, Carlson visits school a few times a week solo, to water plants and feed the lizards that live in her classroom. 

    With a pair of other horticulture teachers in the district, she’s working on assembling hydroponic grow kits for her students, including plastic containers, nutrient solutions, grow lights and other materials. But sourcing the supplies has proved challenging because of supply chain bottlenecks during the pandemic, she said. For now, her students have seeds and soil.

    They check in with a classmate — their plant buddy — about how their plants are doing. And Carlson polls her class regularly to find out what they want to learn next.

    On tap: medicinal plants, how to identify different species and how to grow food.

    “I’m trying to have students think about [how] science is everywhere, and it’s part of everything we do,” Carlson said. “A big part of it is me sharing my excitement.”  

    Read more at seattletimes.com 
    Hannah Furfaro: hfurfaro@seattletimes.com


    BHS Teacher India Carslon outside with student at plant table Plants on a table BHS Teacher India Carslon outside with student at plant table

    "India Carlson, who teaches botany and environmental horticulture, speaks with Ballard High School student Norah Bunnell, 17, during a curbside pickup event at the school Dec. 10. (Erika Schultz / The Seattle Times)"

    "Ballard High School teacher India Carlson has cloned plants to give away to her students to help cultivate their interest in botany and environmental horticulture. “I look to hook people early on plants,” she says. (Erika Schultz / The Seattle Times)"

    "About every two weeks, India Carlson, a botany and environmental horticulture teacher at Ballard High School, dons a mask and gloves, carts out trays of plants to the back of the school, and gives plants to students... (Erika Schultz / The Seattle Times)"


    Please refer to the BHS Course Catalog pdf icon for more detailed information for each course offered at Ballard High School.

    Ballard HS Garden Weather Station

    View Current Weather Conditions > > >

    image example of the ballard high botany weather conditions use the hyperlink to go to site



    Program Highlights



    Annual BHS Plant Sale was a Success!

    May 2019

    Annual Plant Sale posterBHS Teacher India Carlson tells us they sold sustainably grown vegetable starts and annual flowers, with all proceeds that went straight to the Botany and Horticulture program at Ballard HS! 

    The Greenhouse is located in NW203 and on 15th Ave NW, just next to the high school. The Annual Plant Sale raised over double what was raised last year!


    NW Flower and Garden Show | Feb 2017

    Ballard competed at the NW Flower and Garden Show | Garden Wars against Nathan Hale High School in Feb 2017. We took a team of 3 students to design and build a garden at the show. This was the first time that high school programs compete in Garden Wars.


    Update Feb 2016

    The Greenhouse grows vegetable and flower starts for the spring plant sale to take place in May. Students can volunteer after-school in the greenhouse and the garden for community Service Hours. We are always looking for way to connect out work to the community so if you have any ideas please contact BHS Teacher India Carlson at ikcarlson@seattleschools.org


    Sept 2014
    NW Flower and Garden Show

    Congratulations to the BHS garden team. They won the most creative design award in the student category at the 2014 NW Flower and Garden show for the urban chic them of Paris rooftop artist's garden.


    Feb 2013
    NW Flower and Garden Show

    BHS students won again in the "most creative design" category in the Funky competition! The grade theme was based on Jurassic Park and was titled Greenasaurus Rex.

    Image of mushroom garden from the flower show

    This makes 3 years running that Ballard students have won an award at the show. This year's statistics are:

    6 devoted students, 150 service learning hours, 23 consecutive days of work after school and on the weekend, 90$ in spray paint, 50$ in goodwill items, About 60 plant Donations from Limback lumber, Miller Paint, the ReStore, Swanson’s and the loaning of Mr. Bones from Ms. Vogel’s