High Elevation Garden Workshops

Raised bed

Growing Fruits and Veggies at High Elevation

The 2020 High Elevation Gardening / Grow Your Own Virtual Workshop Series: Want to grow your own fruits and vegetables here in Tahoe? Make sure you learn the tricks, the environmentally-friendly ways, and the science-based methods for gardening at high elevation by attending free (online) workshops in May and June.  Participants receive instruction on cultivation techniques, history/background on the plants being highlighted, various strategies to apply based on their local growing environment, and ultimately take home free plants for their gardens. These are family-friendly workshops, with opportunities to get acquainted with growing fruits and vegetables. All workshops are in collaboration with UCCE Lake Tahoe Master Gardeners, Tahoe Heritage Foundation, University of Nevada Reno Desert Farming Initiative, and Slow Food Lake Tahoe. Register for each workshop to receive the link to attend the virtual workshop. Missed a workshop? All workshops will be recorded (and posted on this page) for participants to watch at any time if you are unable to attend the live workshop or if you would like to refer back to it throughout the planting and harvesting process.

There is a $5-10 suggested donation for every plant pick-up and garden workshops, thank you so much for your support! Proceeds will benefit the UC Davis Tahoe Environmental Research Center’s High Elevation Gardening Workshops. Online donations can be made here.

For questions about the gardening workshops and our varietal phenology project please contact Alison Toy.

Planting/Harvesting Resources

Potato Cheat Sheet

Lettuce and Kale Cheat Sheet

Artichoke Cheat Sheet

Tomato Cheat Sheet

Garlic Cheat Sheet

Workshop follow-up surveys (must be completed prior to plant pick-ups)

Organic Gardening 101: https://tinyurl.com/organicgardeningsurvey

Potatoes are Appealing: https://tinyurl.com/potatoessurvey

Lettuce not forget Kale: https://tinyurl.com/lettucekale

Okey Dokey, we'll try Artichokes: https://tinyurl.com/artichokesurvey

Tomatoes, for gardening masochists: https://tinyurl.com/tomatoessurvey

Tasty, tasty Garlic: https://tinyurl.com/garlicsurvey

Dates for the 2020 Garden Workshops:

  • May 5: Organic Gardening 101
  • May 12: Potatoes are Appealing
  • May 19: Lettuce not forget Kale 
  • May 26: Okey Dokey, we'll try Artichokes 
  • June 2: Tomatoes, for gardening masochists.
  • June 16: Garden Social Hour
  • September 15: Garlic

2020 Garden Workshop Recordings:

Organic Gardening 101

Growing an organic garden is better for you, better for your community, and better for the environment. It can be a challenge, but your body and the Earth will thank you for accepting the challenge.


Potatoes are Appealing

Featuring the much loved starchy potato, one of the few vegetables known to be grown at Lake Tahoe (Glenbrook House) during pioneer times. The potato, native to the Andes Mountain Range, is well suited to our climate. Interesting varieties have been selected for our trials, including blue, red and gold types.  

Lettuce not forget Kale 

One of the first crops to be harvested from any garden every year are leafy green vegetables like kale and lettuce. They are super easy to grow and will be a satisfying growing experience for any new gardener. Add a couple of other veggies from the high elevation garden talks and you have one great spring salad or soup. Get a bountiful harvest multiple times throughout the season, make kale chips for a super food snack or augment your salad mix with our heirloom varieties! 


May 26th: Okey Dokey we'll try Artichokes 

Meet the thistle you actually want in your garden. The artichoke is an unbloomed flower of a plant and each plant can produce up to 20 artichokes, so plenty for the entire household. Register here! 

June 2nd: Tomatoes: For Tahoe Gardening Masochists

 In cooler climates tomatoes typically are grown in greenhouses. We are trying hardier varieties of tomatoes that have the potential to thrive in the Tahoe climate. This fruit is notoriously the problem child for gardens here in Tahoe. Learn the techniques required to successfully grow these plants in our highly variable summer temperatures

If you're looking for some key points of information, please note the timestamps below:

Planting (22:57)
Watering (30:41)
Suckering (36:42)

In cooler climates tomatoes typically are grown in greenhouses. The Lake Tahoe Master Gardeners and UC Davis TERC are more interested in the hardier species of tomatoes that can handle the climate of Tahoe. This fruit is notoriously the problem child for garden families here in Tahoe. Learn the techniques required to grow these plants in our cool summers. Topics include proper varietal selection, location in the garden or container, planting options and methods for protecting the young plants and fruit. Register here!

Tasty, tasty Garlics