Do your kids ever just enjoy hanging around with your friends? I know mine do and so do some of our garden herbs! It may sound a bit wacky but we hung up my garden with a shoe organizer! It’s funny but clever!
- Hanging shoe organizer and hooks
- Plastic trash bag
- Plants or seeds
The first thing to do is figure out where you want to put your hanging herb garden. Look for a sunny spot. Behind a door leading to the outside or a wooden fence should work perfectly. Wherever you decide to hang it, be sure it’s being help up there tight. Use strong hooks or even wire to attach the shoe organizer. Remember each pocket is going to be filled with soil, plants, and water so it needs to be pretty strong.
Once the shoe organizer is hung, do a water test. Check to make sure water will drain out by pouring water directly into the pockets.
If the water just puddles up but doesn’t drain out, use a small knife to put small holes at the bottom of each pocket.
Also, depending on where you hang your shoe organizer, you might want to add a sheet of plastic or big garbage bag to help keep the area from getting too wet.
Now fill each pocket with soil. Fill it almost all the way up to the top. Think of each little pocket to be like a small flowerpot. Leave an inch or two from the top empty.
We added a couple pinches of vegetable fertilizer to each pocket to help give our plants a head start. Fertilizer adds extra nutrients (or vitamins) to the soil that the plants love to eat!
Now choose your plants or seeds and plant away.
We started by planting raddish and parsley seeds. It was kind of funny, because as we were planting we started to forget which pockets we had planted the seeds in. A quick solution was to mark the pockets with a piece of black tape to help us remember. It would be bad to plant too many things in one small pocket. The roots wouldn’t have room to grow!
We then added in other herbs. Mint is perfect to grow in a pocket or two. The roots grow like crazy and will take over your yard if you’re not careful. By planting them in a pocket, you can have the yummy herb without it taking over the rest of your garden.
We also added in some oregano and parsley to use in spaghetti sauce.
Once everything is planted, be sure to watch each pocket. Then sit back and wait for it to grow.
Look around this month and I’ll bet you’ll see a few red, white and blue flags and other decorations getting ready to celebrate July 4th, or America’s birthday. Each year the kids and I love celebrating by walking around our neighborhood and spotting flowers in America’s colors.
If we find them on the ground or a neighbor lets us pick them, we enjoy our yearly tradition of creating a flag for the front of our house.
But blue flowers are a little bit more challenging until you walk up to agapanthus or hydrangeas. Both have hues of blue so use them!
Collect a bagful of flowers to use to make a flag. Just remember to always ask if you can pick flowers that belong to other people.
Once you have your flowers bring them home and separate them into different colored piles. Each color should have it’s own pile.
Then, cut two pieces of clear sticky paper, or clear shelf liner, to be the same size. Whatever size you cut will be the size of your flag.
Remove the backing from one piece.
Start to stick the flowers on the sticky side of the paper. We started with blue in the corner. Leave about 1/2 inch along the edges so the other piece of sticky paper will have something to stick to.
Red is both the top and bottom stripe on the American Flag so we did those next. The flag also has 13 stripes, but we didn’t enough room or flowers to do that so we improvised. We have 5 stripes total.
Once you’re happy with your flag, peel the backing off the second piece of sticky paper and cover the flowers with it. Press down hard on the flag to seal in every space between the flowers.
Attach it to a pole or stick and it’s ready to fly high. You could also use this idea to make patriotic placemats!
Go red, white and blue!
They’re sweet. They’re chewy. They’re little nuggets of yummy fun and perfect for a quick snack. It makes sense that my kids wanted to plant raisins in our garden right? Well, when they first asked about getting a raisin plant, I was excited to tell them we already have them growing on a vine in our backyard. “What?” they both screamed with excitement mixed with doubt when they first learned that raisins start out as grapes.
So of course out to experiment we went!
Here’s how I taught them that raisins are really grapes…
Head outside and find a sunny place. Put a paper towel on top of a cooling rack and line up the grapes. It’s okay to sneak a grape or two for a snack too! It’s actually encouraged as long as you don’t eat all of them.
Make sure the grapes are spread out and not touching each other. The grapes are going to be dried and you want to make sure that there is space around each grape to maximize this process.
Once the grapes are lined up, place another paper towel on top. We had to find some small garden rocks to put on top of it so it didn’t blow away. Leave the rack of grapes outside and let them dry out. That’s all there is to it!
Each day, check the grapes to see what’s happening to them. Are they drying out? Do you see any wrinkles? What adjectives can you use to describe the process? Ours started to wrinkle up in just a couple days.
On day 5, we actually had a couple real raisins. It was really cool. The kids learned that the raisins are formed when the water inside the grape evaporates or escapes, leaving behind a shriveled piece of fruit.
We also learned a valuable lesson. During the night a critter broke through the paper towel and gobbled up most of the raisins. Try to place your grape rack out of reach of any and all nature critters. I guess they like raisins as much as we do! (Maybe put your tray inside near a window that gets lot of sunlight or take the tray in each night.)
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.