Project Lemon Tree

Eco-STEM Project-Based Learning, Grades K-12

The Student-Made Outdoor Classroom

Why Lemons?

Lemon trees, of all cultivated plants, are one of the best at removing C02 from the atmosphere. Lemons are also a high value agricultural crop, used in cuisine world-wide and have active ingredients useful for cleaning and fragrance products. For education, Lemon tree planting offers experiences in soil science, agriculture practices, design and construction, culinary arts, innovation and entrepreneurship. Lemon Trees are also school safe, drought tolerant and low maintenance. For FAQs and more, see About »

Leveraging Lemons to Learn

PLT empowers students to design and build their own outdoor classroom. Options include planting lemon trees in pots, planting in the ground and building support structures like trellises and pergolas. See Video »

PLT Curriculum features 16 modular activities that empower teachers to customize syllabi to fit available time, interests and resources. Our Teacher’s Guide includes a quick-start checklist, student handouts, student surveys, Care Plan and CCSS Alignments. Student Journals include team-building, Project Journaling, instructions, tips and examples. See Curriculum »

Teachers: Get a Class Kit

Curriculum Packages (a $300 value) include:

  • 1 Lemon Tree (depending upon supplies, more may be available)
  • 1 Teacher’s Guide
  • 20 Student Project Journals (available in print or online version at

Register your class to purchase or enter a plea to receive a FREE Curriculum Pack. Open to Hawai’i schools, all islands, while supplies last.

Sponsors: Adopt a Class

For just $300, you can provide a PLT Curriculum Package to a class of 20 students. Packages include 1 lemon tree, 1 Teacher’s Guide and 20 Student Journals. You can select a recipient school from our School List or specify a contact at a school of your choice.

Student Perspective

I feel so lucky to have been part of the Project Lemon Tree (PLT) at Jefferson Elementary School and Kalani High School. It was truly inspiring to witness a community brought together to positively transform a torched playground to a beautiful pergola…

I gained many valuable critical thinking, presentational, and management skills… I learned how to build a scale model… how a trellis should be constructed and how to create a presentation to share the project. This project also taught me how to facilitate the process of building, initiate weekly reports and collaborate with others.

After hearing how lemon trees reduce carbon dioxide in our atmosphere and that gardening spaces will teach children about sustainability, my motivation to engage in serving our community, environment, and education system grew.

Katrina Kuo, Kalani High School

Teacher Perspective

The curriculum was based on “Why Lemon Trees?” Every day we talked about how we’re going to take care of the lemon trees, how we’re going to use the lemons in the future and how we’re going to connect with our community. This program gets them ready for the real world.

Jessica Barbera, 1st Grade Teacher, Thomas Jefferson Elementary

2019-20 Current Year

Last Updated: 1/18/20 

Islands Served


Title 1 Schools

Current Classes

Trees in Program

Total Students






Mixed Race


Pacific islander


Fern Elementary Know Lemon Trellises!

Fern Elementary Know Lemon Trellises!

Thanks to funding from Kamehameha Schools, Fern Elementary in Honolulu received and planted 4 lemon tree installs as part of a Project Lemon Tree curriculum series for their 5th grade classes. Huge Mahalo to Ian Custino and Hailama Farden for making this program...

Kalani High School Pergola Dedication

Kalani High School Pergola Dedication

On Saturday, 2/9/2020, Kalani High School dedicated their new Project Lemon Tree pergola and planted 6 lemon trees. This project was spearheaded by Uncle Ken Kajihara and the Kalani FFA Maker Club. Now in the good hands of Uncle Brandon Saigusa, the pergola will...

2019 Project Lemon Tree Cohort Grows!

2019 Project Lemon Tree Cohort Grows!

This year's cohort of new schools participating in Project Lemon Tree grew substantially over last year. While we worked only on the island of Oahu last year, this year welcomes participants on 5 Hawaiian islands. We're really excited to welcome the following schools...

Program Partners

PLT Now at!

GET MODERN. SAVE TREES. PLT is a featured project at BizzyB, the student project-based learning platform published by Bizgenics Foundation. BizzyB features multi-user collaboration, remote mentoring, awesome presentation formats like slideshows & business plans, digital student portfolios & aspiration and skills assessments.

HAVE A GREAT PROJECT YOU WANT TO SHARE? BizzyB offers a 20% revenue share to project template authors. Teacher and students alike are invited to post templates.

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