Seedlings into the Garden - Broccoli
PLANT SEEDS OUTDOORS - Beets
Bug Hunt or "JOURNALING"
- Become familiar with transplanting vegetable seedlings.
- Become familiar with planting seeds.
- Observe flying insects
- seedlings of a cool - season crop, either started indoors and ready for transplanting or bought
- beet seeds or another cool-season crop such as broccoli, chard, kale
- hand cultivators
- watering can
- Set out garden tools.
- Decide where the plants and seeds will go.
- Map out how the activities will unfold. In this session, teams of 2 or 3 children take turns planting seed
and transplanting seedlings with one adult, while the other children hunt for bugs accompanied by another
adult. But they could just as easily engage in another garden-related activity that takes place near the
garden, but not directly in it, for example, they could do a nature observation and draw or write in their journals.
Bug Hunt: flying insects
In many situations, the garden won't be large enough for all children to work at the same time. If that's the
case, divide the group into two or more teams. First one team works in the garden, while the other team "journals". Then the teams switch tasks. Here's one way to set it all in motion.
- Find a spot near some flowers where you can sit for a little while and observe what creatures are
coming for a visit or a longer stay.
- Take note of the kinds of plants you are near, the season, the time of day, and the weather.
- Record your observations in your journal. Include drawings.
Generally speaking, on warm, sunny days lots of flying insects should be active around flowers. On cool or wet days, there will be less activity. Also see Session #7 for a bug hunt that focuses on soil dwellers. See Session #8 for an introduction to investigating animals with the help of insect box magnifiers.
Transplant Seedlings Started Inside
Divide the group. Get some students started with their non-gardening activities. Then introduce the gardening activity to the first group of kids who will garden
Show the hand cultivator.
- smoothing the soil
- Demonstrate how to use a hand cultivator to loosen and level the soil in preparation for transplanting.
Then invite kids to work with the tool to get the planting area ready.
- Show how to scoop (broccoli) seedling out of its container.
- Show how to dig a small hole that can accommodate the seedling with its root ball. Broccoli can be
planted a little deeper than it was growing before. It will make new roots (adventitious roots) along
the parts of the stem that end up underground.
- Use a trowel to mark the spots where the planting holes for the broccoli should go.
- Have kids plant the broccoli.
- Show how to cover the hole after planting
Use hand cultivator to make a shallow line, or furrow.
- Review the idea that seeds need to be spaced apart. Beet seeds need to be spaced about an inch apart.
- Give out seeds and invite children to plant them carefully one by one.
- When all seeds have been planted, demonstrate how to take two fingers and gently cover the seeds with soil. Gently pat it down.
Once the students finish their plant drawing, invite the whole group to come together: Show your own picture, say something about the plant you drew, and look at the other pictures.
Check soil to see if it is dry. If it is, water till it is damp but not soaked.