Teaching kids where their food comes from is a valuable lesson that will stay with them forever. Gardening fosters a sense of independence, models sustainability and encourages healthy eating.
Match kid’s creativity by rethinking what a garden plot should be. If space is an issue, container gardens or vertical varieties are easier to maintain and can be done to scale in order to fit the child’s abilities and growing plans.
A simple planter concept that also reuses plastic bottles can be seen in a product called the Petomato.
By taking an ordinary empty water bottle and fitting on the special cap that contains seeds, an instant starter garden is made. Placed near a sunny window, the sprouts should take off.
Kids don’t have to wait until warmer weather to enjoy a garden. Reportedly, the Petomato will produce year round cherry tomatoes, basil or habañero peppers.
Check out their bright and quirky video:
For a do it yourself version, this can be done at home with regular plastic bottles by drilling holes in the cap. Place seeds and soil in a cheesecloth or gauze like material, put in the bottle and screw the cap back on. Keep in a sunny place until they begin to root and transfer to a bigger container if needed.
Saving up bottles for this beginner garden is a neat classroom idea to demonstrate recycling and reusing behaviors. Kids can also decorate their own bottles for a personalized mini-garden.
For a fun spin on a garden area, try making a kid’s corner teepee. It’s inexpensive and requires just a few supplies.
Vined plants like cherry tomatoes, cucumbers or native climbing flowers would grow well with this type of canopy.
Check out the how-to:
There are also many ideas for classroom projects, botany studies and professional development opportunities.
Children who are exposed to outdoor activities like gardening are at a natural advantage when it comes to green fun.
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