Sep 23, 2010
some PEANUTS for my peanut gallery- kinderGARDENS Finale!
Can you believe we've been doing this since April? Wow - almost 6 months of kinderGARDEN updates, and it's been so fun! I have always included the kids in the garden, mostly out of necessity since it's not like I can leave them alone in the house, they'd burn it down - but this contest really enabled their personalities to shine in their creativity and ideas and is definitely something we will always enjoy doing together.
On to the week's big event: The Peanut Box!
After filming this I researched it and my instincts are right, we will leave them until the plants turn yellow and start to die off before harvesting. This enables the shell/pod to mature and cure properly. If you want to learn more about harvesting peanuts, check this link. There are GOBS of peanuts in this little space and the plants are already taking on a yellowish hue, so I think we will definitely have enough to try the kids idea of homemade peanut butter soon, probably mid-October.
In the interest of at least showing a sneak preview of what we are in for, below is a shot of what came off of one of the plants we tested:
Although with our record-breaking hot summer the "green roof" didn't work out, the kids did a great job of supplementing that with a few other projects besides that and the peanut box.
Summary in photos of the past 6 months of kinderGARDENS highlights!
When Loch announced that his teacher always wanted a garden but she lives in an apartment, the kids packed a box of goodies to take in to her on the last day of school!
The kids got to experience the building side of things in the garden when they helped make the peanut box out of scrap with Daddy before he left for deployment.
I do a program with the Master Gardeners for 1st Graders called "Ready, Set, Grow!" and the kids inspired a new idea this year all about kids in the garden, and helped me create this display which was an absolute hit in the classrooms!
Kim, who hosts the kinderGARDENS contest sent Loch a fantastic book, highly recommend it - it is entertaining and educational for both kids & adults.
Everyone knows what a fan I am of violations of the child labor laws... they picked many a berry on 100 degree days and squeezed many lemons...
but the rewards were worth it!
We learned all about our garden friends up close...
they were sent out "on assignment" to photograph and caption anything they want...
Finn's caption for the above was... "I like Dill and I wanna smell it every day"
they learned about saving seed
they were surprised and excited when Miss Gina mailed them some flower seeds in support of their kinderGARDENS activities, and then a trip out to her flower farm where she taught them how to snip the flowers they wanted to bring home and got to meet the chickens that laid the eggs we brought home.
They have impressed me with their creativity - below is what happened when I was busy mowing the lawn and left my shed open...a scarecrow built from whatever they could find!
and of course there was plenty of time to just have a little fun!
I am sure most of you know that my husband/their father has been deployed to the Middle East for the past 4+ months, so I just want to say "thank you!" to Kim at The Inadvertent Farmer for putting this contest together and all the participants for giving me a project that has made the time go by quickly! Every time my alarm on my computer calendar goes off saying "kinderGARDENS update" gives me motivation to get out there with my kids and DO something. Missing hubby and their daddy certainly gives me some "blech" days, which might be fine to indulge in during the winter, but with 2 kids out of school in the summertime I definitely can't get away with "blech" days! We got some great ideas for next year from other participants and have learned so much from everyone!
Check in to The Inadvertent Farmer to see all the participants' final posts of the contest, it's been fun!