The deadline for schools to apply for the fifth annual Arkansas Grown School Garden of the Year Contest has been extended to Friday, Sept. 21.


The contest is sponsored by the Arkansas Agriculture Department (AAD) and Farm Credit, according to a news release.


Applicants may be any Arkansas school, grades pre-K through 12, that had a school garden open during the 2017-2018 school year, or any schools planning to start a garden in the 2018-2019 school year.


All school applicants, except those applying for the school garden start up category, will be required to provide photos or video documentation of garden activities and progress.


Farm Credit is providing funding for winners in the award categories. Entries will be judged by a committee on these categories:


Best School Garden Start-Up Proposal — $500;


Best Nutrition Education Based Garden — $500;


Best Community Collaboration Garden — $500;


Best Environmental Education Focused Garden — $500;


Overall Winning Arkansas Grown School Garden of the Year — $1,000.


Entry forms are available at https://www.agriculture.arkansas.gov/aad-grants.


“The Arkansas Grown program promotes food and products grown in Arkansas by Arkansas producers, and helps make the connection between growers and buyers. Arkansas Grown is a program of the Arkansas Agriculture Department,” according to the release.


To find producers, farmer’s markets, and other local fresh food resources, visit www.arkansasgrown.org.


With approximately $3.2 billion in assets, AgHeritage Farm Credit Services, Delta Agricultural Credit Association, Farm Credit Midsouth, Farm Credit of Western Arkansas support rural communities and agriculture across Arkansas, according to the release.


The Arkansas Agriculture Department offers its programs to all eligible persons without discrimination.