Gardening with your children

Every year around this time we get the ‘bug’ to garden. My oldest has the green thumb in the family. She can grow anything, but specializes in trees. She has grown two apple trees and two avocado trees from seeds. And although she has had great success growing plants from seeds— the rest of us struggle a bit.

This year we are trying a garden in a different way and finding it very successful. We have tried to grow plants from kitchen scraps. So far we have tried celery and lettuce. This is a great activity for children and adults. (You’ll see what I mean about the adult part later!)

Sydney's Avocado Trees

Sydney’s Avocado Trees

    Here’s how it is done:

Cut celery or lettuce

Cut celery or lettuce approx. 3″ from root end.


Then put the cut end into a cup of water. Leave about 1/2" out of the water. Make sure the root end is covered.

Then put the cut end into a cup of water. Leave about 1/2″ out of the water. Make sure the root end is covered.


Here is a picture of a head of lettuce after a week in the cup.

Here is a picture of a head of lettuce after a week in the cup.


Leave the sprouting plant in the cup until it is about 3" tall.

Leave the sprouting plant in the cup until it is about 3″ tall.


After the sprouted plant has reached 3", plant it into the ground or container.

After the sprouted plant has reached 3″, plant it into the ground or container.

I have found that if you are using a container you can fill an empty wine bottle with water (fun part for adults is to empty the wine bottle) and invert it into the container next to your new little sprouted plant. The water in the wine bottle will keep the soil evenly moist throughout the day and help you if you forget to water your little plant.

We have about 4 lettuce plants and 3 celery plants working for us in the back yard right now. When you want to harvest from your plants just cut off the outer leaves of lettuce (or outer stalks of celery) and your plant will keep producing for you for a LONG time. Kids love the quick return of this type of garden! But if you are a die hard gardener that needs to start from seed look for my next post. I will show you how to make a seed terrarium from a milk carton and toilet paper tubes!

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