Gardening is not an easy task. . . It is hard work but can be relaxing at the same time. You are probably closer to nature while gardening than during any other activity. Working with the soil and having the land be productive for you personally can be a satisfying experience. It is also a subject that you will never know enough about. Most schools do not have the proper soil on their grounds or even a place to plant a garden. Many teachers do not have any experience in planting a garden of vegetables, treatment of soil and knowing different methods of gardening. There are many and there will continue to be more. It will suffice to teach children how to get the soil ready, how to make a garden plan and think about what should be planted. Somewhere around your school, there is a little patch of land around a home that is just laying there idle. Have your children write a letter to the tenant or landlord asking if they could plant a garden in the spring.
During the year they would plant in a Root Vue Farm (HSP) a radish, an onion, and a carrot seed. Because the Root Vue Farm has a plexiglass front they will be able to view the roots as they grow and also the available space between the roots. They should come to the conclusion that they could plant vegetables with short roots in between the long-rooted vegetables. This will demonstrate to them how you could produce more food in a specific area. If they plant the garden in the spring, they could research this method and see how productive it is. John Jeavons’ book, How To Grow More Vegetables is an excellent source for this project. It gives examples for multi-crop planting, companion planting, garden plans and also bed preparation. This is not a children’s book, but it explains all the methods with visuals. (7) Hydroponic gardening is very interesting to children on all grade levels. Place a small tomato plant in a glass jar that is filled with a mixture of water and Miracle-Gro. Be sure that the first set of leaves, at the bottom, are not submersed in the water. Support the plant at the top so that it does not fall into the water. When the roots get strong and long enough the plant may go into the ground. You may also keep it growing hydroponically. When the class starts to prepare Mars for habitation, they will reflect on this activity.