Greenhouse & Gardens

The Castleton Greenhouse and Gardens host a botanical collection that serves the entire Castleton community as an educational resource for the study, observation and aesthetic enjoyment of plant specimens from all over the world. The collection is available to enrich the curriculum across the college community, from biology to art.

We envision a seamless botanical collection that flows naturally from inside the greenhouse to the outdoor gardens. The outdoor medicinal and native plant gardens grow many specimens of economic and local interest. The outdoor gardens currently include over 100 different species of medicinal, culinary, butterfly and ornamental plants. Many plants are identified with labels giving common and scientific names.

Inside the greenhouse, the permanent collection resides in the south half of the greenhouse while the north end is used as growing space for class projects. The greenhouse hallway that connects to the Jeffords building provides space for faculty and student research.  

The indoor permanent collection houses over 100 plants that touch our lives everyday, including plants that give us food, drink, spices and fiber. The collection also has specimens that represent major plant adaptations such as aquatic and wetland plants, plants adapted to dry climates (cacti and succulents), and the always-popular orchids and air plants.

Who Uses the Greenhouse?

TheThe Greenhouse supports many Natural Sciences Department courses including Horticulture of Medicinal Plants, Plant Ecology, Biological Illustration, Science of Food, and Flora of Vermont. The greenhouse also provides space for faculty and student research. There is also a very active Greenhouse and Garden Student Club. With proceeds from their plant sales, the club has built the charming garden patio with seating for 14 and most recently a new small three-season greenhouse to provide even more springtime growing space. We welcome visits by school children. In the past, we have given tours for Mt. Holly, Rutland Northwest, Castleton, Fair Haven and Brandon school children. Contact the Greenhouse Manager, Mary Droege by email or call her at (802) 468-1758 to schedule a tour.

Castleton Greenhouse & Garden Club

Castleton has a very active student Greenhouse and Garden Club. The only criteria for joining is that you love plants! The club has helped fund two major campus improvements: the lovely garden patio that seats 14 and is open to everyone, and the new in 2017 three season greenhouse that provides students even more growing space.

  • Are you interested in joining the club?
  • Are you a plant, garden or nature enthusiast?
  • Would you like to learn more about caring for plants indoors and out?
  • Do you simply want to help support a quiet place on campus where anyone in the Castleton community can go to relax and enjoy the beauty of Castleton's greenhouse and gardens?
  • If so, we would love to have you as a part of the greenhouse and gardens club.

What the club does:

  • Grows plants for club plant sales.
  • Plan events such as plant sales, greenhouse events, and the spring Greenhouse open house.
  • Plan and attend field trips to nurseries and botanical gardens.
  • Help develop educational materials for the campus and local community on botanical topics.

All students, staff and faculty are welcome to join the Greenhouse and Gardens club.

For information on joining the club contact Club Advisor Mary Droege.

Visiting the Greenhouse

The Castleton greenhouse is open to visitors. Enter through the Jeffords Building lower level room 136. If the door is open you are welcome to come in and visit. We are happy to schedule in advance special tours for school groups or community members.

To schedule a greenhouse tour, please contact Greenhouse Manger Mary Droege.

Greenhouse Use Policies


The greenhouse is maintained to support academic course work at Castleton. Unfortunately we are not able to allow personal use of the greenhouse space.


We do accept donations of plants if space allows. Please contact Mary Droege for more information.

Pest Management

We practice Integrated Pest Management (IPM) in the greenhouse. This is an approach to pest control that includes a commitment to maintaining a clean greenhouse, on-going pest detection, the use of beneficial insects and using chemical control only as a last resort.

More information on IPM contact is available through the University of Vermont Extension site.