Want a little inspiration for Kid’s Garden ideas? The Gardens & Projects for Kids series of articles provide you with pictures, ideas, projects and fun themes to get kids outdoors, growing their own food and connecting with nature.

DIY Upcycled Broken Pot Ideas

What do you do with a Broken Pot?

I don’t know how these accidents happen, but I’m left to pick up the pieces (literally). I’m ‘shattered’ by the number of broken pots around this place! I hope my dilemma and discoveries will help inspire what you too can do with broken pots.

DIY Upcycled Broken Pot Ideas. Image top right: http://flic.kr/p/H5SNr | The Micro Gardener

To put you in the picture, there have been multiple casualties here lately. I’m not talking about my bruised hubby falling off the ladder – his ego not his body! … No, these accidents have happened to my precious pot collections.

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Easy Guide to Growing Microgreens

Second only to sprouts, microgreens are the quickest food crop we urban gardeners can grow! If you have limited time, space or gardening skills let me introduce you to growing microgreens. Tasty, nutrient-dense ‘fast food’ in just a few easy steps.

 

Rainbow salad with buckwheat microgreens | The Micro Gardener

I loved all the flavours in this rainbow salad with buckwheat microgreens & sesame oil, tamari (organic soy), vinegar, olive oil + maple syrup dressing.

 

What are Microgreens?

With sprouts, you eat the fully germinated seed. I think of sprouts as the ‘babies’ of the plant world. A seed that bursts open with the first root and shoot(s). Whereas sprouts are seeds that germinate by being soaked and rinsed in water, microgreens are grown in soil.

During seed germination, the cotyledon(s) or seed leave(s) emerge from the soil first. [A cotyledon is part of the embryo within the seed of the plant.]  Through photosynthesis, the cotyledon(s) provide initial food to give the plants a burst of energy for the true leaves to develop.

Microgreens are the next stage in a plant’s development, kind of like the ‘toddlers’ of the plant world. Microgreens can be harvested when the germinated seeds have developed tiny roots and at least their first true leaves. They have similar health benefits to sprouts, but greater nutritional value.

So you can add minerals to the seed raising mix to boost the nutrient value and flavour. These young seedlings are harvested smaller than baby salad leaves. (more…)

DIY Repurposed Garden Projects

10 Creative Space and Resource Saving Ideas

I’m always looking for inspiring, low-cost and resourceful ideas for the garden – here are some of my favourite projects for you to try.

1. Peg Plant Marker – This is an easy improvised solution using everyday materials.  Kids can paint the pegs and make them colourful and if you save seeds from your edible gardens like I do, this makes plant identification a snack!

 

Dill peg plant marker. Photo: Stacey Shitani

Always scratching around to find a plant marker? MYO in seconds with a bamboo skewer, wooden peg and a permanent marker! How easy is this?

 

2. Tiered Terracotta Planter – I love this project from Amy at Positively Splendid because it’s a simple design idea to dress up your garden entrance.  (more…)

Grow Your Own Herb Tea Garden

Want to Grow a Herb Tea Garden?

With so many culinary and medicinal health benefits, a herb tea garden is a must for every gardener. Even if you just have a balcony or tiny space, herbs have so many uses.

Grow your own herb tea garden - easy herbs to grow, brew and use for health

Grow your own herb tea garden – easy herbs to grow, brew and use for health

Easy Herb Teas to Grow & Brew

If you’re not already growing your own herb garden, hopefully you’ll be inspired to start!  There are a wide range of delicious and aromatic herbs that can be grown for hot or iced herb teas and medicinal use.

 

Sprigs of fresh mint for herb tea

Pick sprigs of fresh mint for herb tea

 

Getting Started with Herb Teas

Chamomile (German) Tea

  • A mild flavoured relaxing tea that I’ve used hundreds of times over the years. Helps to calm and soothe the spirit, settle stomach aches and indigestion and is a great tea for helping you relax, destress and get to sleep.  It goes well with a little honey and a slice of lemon.  You can also use the tea as a hot foot bath for tired or sore feet! (more…)

‘Jack & the Bean Stalk’ Theme Garden

Love beans? If you want to encourage children to start growing ‘incredible edibles,’ then this might be just the project to get them excited! I’m sure you’ll also enjoy growing beans this way for yourself.

With a little creative thinking, themed gardens help children learn while they are having fun.  Here’s a cool garden project for the ‘kid’ in all of us – complete with Beans, Beanstalk and even a Giant! Plus lots of quick tips for growing beans.

 

A child's vegie garden can start in any space they can call their own - it might be a corner of your garden, a container or even a self-seal bag with moist cotton wool to start seeds on! | The Micro Gardener

Encourage children to grow a micro garden in a pot or container to get started. They don’t need much space – beans are so easy to grow. When young, tender and homegrown organically, try stopping children from snacking on beans straight from the garden!

 

“Imagination is more important than knowledge. For while knowledge defines all we currently know and understand, imagination points to all we might yet discover and create.” – Albert Einstein

 

How to Create Your ‘Jack and the Bean Stalk & Giant’ Garden

  • There are 3 elements to this garden theme – the bean seeds; the vertical beanstalk structure they need to climb up on like Jack did, and the ‘Giant.’ (more…)

How to Make A Bamboo Tepee in a Minute

DIY Bamboo Tepee Vertical Garden

One of the most useful structures in my garden are bamboo tepees. They are the perfect vertical garden solution for growing more in less space.  Here’s my simple system for making a 3 or 4 legged tepee from bamboo stakes in about a minute for around a $1!

My snow peas are currently growing on a homemade bamboo tepee in a pot.

I have countless tepees in my garden growing seasonal edible climbing crops. These snow peas are flowering and fruiting and their tendrils love the vertical stakes to grab hold of.

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Gardens for Kids – Design Ideas & Themes

“Gardening has a magical quality when you are a child.”- Barbara Damrosch

Children love walking through a flower garden

Gardens are places for children to connect with nature

 

Inspirational Themed Gardens offer children a wide range of learning experiences and there are loads of creative ways to encourage kids to start small or think BIG!

Growing plants and being in contact with nature is a therapy in itself and often a neglected but important aspect needed by everyone today, but especially children.

 

“Many studies both in Australia and overseas in school gardens have found students who grow organic fresh produce not only increase their consumption at of vegetables at home but also improve their ability to identify new fruits, herbs and vegetables and develop knowledge of how to grow them.”

What a great gift we can give to children! I hope you enjoy some of the ideas I’ve put together from my experiences.

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Gardens for Kids

Gardens help children connect with nature, their environment and most importantly, the source of their food.  Gardens are places for kids to learn new skills, build their confidence, have fun, learn to take care of plants and build respect for their environment as well as improve their health.

 

“In an age of instant gratification, a garden is one of the few places children can learn patience and delayed gratification by watching and waiting for rewards.” – Anne Gibson

One of my passions is showing children how to grow their own food and have fun gardening.

 

Prep year students planning out their new sensory garden

Having fun as the Veggie Doctor with Prep year students planning out their new sensory garden

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