top of page

Helen Puz Horticultural Grants Program

In recognition of her many years and tremendous dedication to the Garden Club, student horticultural grants are given in the name of Helen Puz.  The Garden Club supports the robust agriculture and horticulture programs within Vashon Island's public and private schools through contributions for structures, planting supplies, and educational materials.  


Helen Puz

Past recipient:  Chautauqua Elementary School's new garden gate for outdoor garden enrichment class.

Past recipient: Raised gardens at McMurray Middle School outside their garden/greenhouse space.


Vashon Youth & Family Services, Behavioral Health Program "Natural Resiliency Project" receives Horticultural Grant - March 2024

The Vashon Youth and Family Services’ Natural Resiliency Project is aligned with the Garden Club’s mission to promote a life-long interest in gardening and educate students on sustainable gardening and local native flora and fauna. The Natural Resiliency Project is aligned with the Helen Puz Student Benefit program in that it supports environmentally sound horticulture. Through the curriculum we will encourage students to understand the connection between the health of the environment and their own well-being. They’ll receive hands-on instructions in gardening and behavioral health programming that will strengthen their relationship with themselves and the natural processes of gardening, helping things to grow and thrive. 


Participants will be students of all ages that will participate in the project who participate in counseling and mental health support. Our resident sustainable farmer is Jene Farr, who is a current intern with plans to become an employee in June/July of this year, 2024. We will happily fill out your project evaluation. We intend for this to be an ongoing project for many years.


I’m now able to provide you with a budget breakdown. My apologies for not having that ready by your deadline. We were still gathering estimates and I mistook the cost of wood for the total project cost. We’re still requesting $900 to fund the cost of wood for the initial cost of constructing two raised beds. VYFS will fund the soil, hardware and fencing if needed. Fencing is not ideal in the area that we would like to have the beds. The seeds will be donated by staff and volunteers. Labor and maintenance will be provided by volunteers and staff. The funds for this project will be a separate budget activity to ensure that your support will be spent on this project only.


  • Wood supplies for 2 beds - $900

  • Soil  - $210 ($70/yard)

  • Hardware (nuts, bolts, nails) - $100

  • Seeds and/or starters  - $75 In-Kind

  • Fencing (if needed)  - $400

  • Total cost:        $1,685 with fencing, $1,285 without fencing



The Vashon Maury Garden Club is welcome to visit the project site during the summer garden tours. We ask that you schedule in advance to ensure the privacy and confidentiality of participants in our counseling programs. Saturdays are generally ok to visit and Sundays all day are the best days to schedule a visit.

Golden Chakra

Chautauqua Elementary School  "Children's Garden" receives Horticultural Grant- March 2023

fall_newsletter22 (2).jpg
spring_quarterly_v2 (2).jpg
CES garden plans

CES Garden Coordinators, Gillian Simmons & Lindsey Foster received a grant of $800 to renovate and restore the school's Childrens' Garden created in 2004.

winter_quarterly (2).jpg

 The Helen Puz Horticultural Grant was presented to McMurray Middle School's  "Outdoor Living Class" for $250.00 

mcmurray garden1.jpg

McMurray Middle School receives Horticultural Grant- March 2022


"The goal of my class is to give students some basic gardening skills while cultivating an interest in gardening. Many students have little, or no experience with gardening and I want them to experience the joy and wonder of watching something that you worked at and planted grow.


While we learn we will be working with Matsuda Farm to gain insight and experience from experts in the field. We are also working with experienced gardeners within the building to ensure a rich experience for the students."


     -Teacher, Paul Wahlen

      Outdoor Living Class

bottom of page