When introducing children to gardening there are 3 key points that will make it a success:
Kids can loose interest fast, so what you choose to do should be a fairly quick project.
It also should be easy enough that the child can do the work themselves. They will be so much more proud if they feel like THEY did the work and not you.
And of course there has to be an element of fun.
My 9 year old granddaughter has mentioned wanting a fairy garden for quite a while now, so when they came to see me this past week we decided to make some.
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We found exactly what we were looking for at Dollar General and for a reasonable price. They had fairies, gnomes, wishing wells, arbors, bridges, signs, houses, and even had some Disney Characters, and most of the items were $1. There was such a good variety, we were all able to choose items to personalize our gardens.
They youngest wanted a unicorn and a bridge. The oldest wanted a wishing well and a fairy house. And I chose flower pots and bee hives.
We bought flower pot saucers to hold our fairy gardens. Irish Moss, Blue Star Creeper and Miracle Gro potting soil were the other ingredients needed for this project.
My granddaughters are 7 and 9 and they made these completely by themselves with only some suggestions from me. Both girl’s fairy gardens turned out so beautiful that I decided I wanted one for myself. So this week I went back to Dollar General, picked out some accessories and made my own. Here are the steps to follow if you’d like to make one for yourself:
Select a pot.
You need a wide surface area so that there is plenty of room for displaying your fairyland. The children chose a large 16″ or 18″ flower pot saucer which worked great! Just the saucer, not the whole pot. This gave us the surface area that we needed and yet it wouldn’t take much potting soil since it wasn’t deep at all.
I chose to use a pot that we already owned. It looks rather like a whiskey barrel but isn’t wood. This saved me some money, but because it is so deep, it would take a LOT of potting soil to fill it up.
Now, this was simple in the shallow saucers, but I didn’t want to have to purchase enough potting soil to fill my large pot. So filling the pot with something else first is the best option. Some good things to use are empty (washed) milk jugs, or soda cans because they are light weight and will take up space, but I had neither of these.
So I decided to use flower pots. I stacked graduated sizes of pots inside of each other for strength so that the largest one would not collapse under the weight of wet soil and plants.
These cheap pots are ones that I saved from plants that I purchased, and will be set upside down in my big decorative pot taking up much of the empty space.
But first, the drainage hole needs to be covered so all the potting soil doesn’t wash out. I placed a scrap piece of landscape fabric over the hole and then set my upside down pots over the top of the fabric.
Now it is ready for the potting soil.
I decided to add a small tree that I have had for over a year and had never decided where to plant it. After putting in the tree, adding the moss and other plants was next.
When you get your plants home and are ready to plant them, you will first need to loosen up the plant roots from the pot. If you squeeze each side of the pot, this will help separate the plant and the pot and make it easier to get out without breaking off the roots.
I started with the biggest item which was a fairy house ($3).
The girls were very happy with their fairy gardens and so was I.
The plants I used were: baby cypress tree, Creeping Jenny, Blue Star Creeper, Scotch Moss.
It was a successful gardening adventure with my granddaughters because it was:
Have you done any gardening projects with your children or your grandchildren?