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Indoor Gardening Ideas
Oh the weather outside is frightful, but the fire is so delightful. And since we’ve no place to go, Let it Grow, Let it Grow, Let it Grow!
Gardening with your children indoors can be an exciting and rewarding activity, especially when the weather outdoors is tempermental. There is a great sense of fulfillment when children begin to see seeds sprouting, or a flower begin to bloom. It provides opportunities for you to spend quality time together as a family, away from video-games, cable-television, computers, and the fast-paced-tech world we live in today. Here are some introductory gardening activities toinitiate your children to the wonderful world of indoor gardening:
Create a planting calendar. Together, determine the average last frost date in the spring, and have your kids mark the date on the calendar. You can call a local garden center or your local Cooperative Extension office if you need help. Use that as a starting point to determine when to start seeds indoors which will later be moved outdoors. These dates will also establish the time to begin sowing seeds outdoors. Cool-season crops like broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, kale, lettuce and spinach can be planted outdoors a few weeks before the average last frost date. Warm-season crops like cucumbers, melons, peppers, squash and tomatoes must be planted after the last frost date scheduled on your calendar.
Start an indoor herb garden. A sunny windowsill provides adequate light and is perfect location for an indoor herb garden. You can start your herb garden from seeds, cuttings, or transplants. When starting from seed, plant them in a moistened mixture containing equal parts of sand, peat moss, and soil. Most herb seeds are so small that they should not be planted more than a quarter –inch deep in moist soil. Another option is to sprinkle the seeds on top of the soil and cover the surface with a light potting mixture. If you do not have any sunny windows, you can also use an artificial-light system to help your herb garden grow. The Growlight Pro Indoor Garden is a compact artificial light system that tucks into any available space so children can grow fragrant herb gardens, sprout seeds, or bring seedlings to flower. Click here for more tips and an article on Herbal Adventures for your kids.
Develop a plant-based school science fair project. It’s that time of year when your middle-school children will choose their own science fair project. Help foster your young scientist by selecting a plant-based activity. Our book, GrowLab: Activities for Growing Minds will help spark students’ curiosity about plants and invite them to think and act like scientists. Developed by the National Gardening Assocation and written and field-tested by educators, this complete curriculum uses fun, illustrated activities to explore plant life cycles, examine plant diversity, and investigate the interdependence o...